Albert Einstein was a flop as a schoolboy and a loner by preference; even after graduating from Zurich Polytechnic people called him a 21-year-old misfit: all he cared about was theoretical physics; clearly the world was passing him by. So while the Allies engaged in a brutal, bloody Gallipoli campaign, Einstein discovered the ""warp"" in space, the parallels that met and the errors of Newton. By the time he was 34, he'd perfected a general theory of Relativity, been elected to the Prussian Academy and whether traveling to New York, the Far East or Argentina was continually feted, always mobbed. Thus his life, a success story with scientific programme notes, gets the expected sketchy, simplistic, even sentimental once-over- but it does not matter: his greatness, both as an intellect and as a man, indomitably shines through. The author, with wise intent or without, includes much of Einstein's own self-commentary and the comments of those closest; these passages bring the book brimmingly to life. For his two wives and sons ""he could turn off his emotions like a tap"", yet he loved and needed them deeply; he lectured about Zionism, liberalism, anti-fascism, but politics was of the moment, ""an equation for eternity""; instrumental in the birth of the Bomb, still he was a pacifist to the core, a lover of ""the mysterious"" and of Mozart. In lieu of a definitive portrait, the Michelmore ""profile"" will do; one accepts it gratefully.