Benjamin Franklin by Walter Isaacson – I suppose one could say this is an amusing read although I thought the biographer was putting on a too positive spin on the American icon who supposedly winks at us in humor. Sure Franklin was inquisitive and helped paved the way for electricity to be viewed as a science instead of something supernatural. Sure he was practical and rational in various pseudonymous guises like Poor Richard. And of course he was shrewd in various political dealings, all of which can be found in any comprehensive history textbook. But he was also a womanizer (there’s no proof that he actually had affairs aside from the one that produced his illegitimate son William, but he maintained many flirtatious relationships with young women) and emotionally cold toward his family (his letters to his wife and children were exceedingly practical, filled with advice and admonition). Perhaps most people with a superficial knowledge about Franklin would consider him a sage-like historical figure, but he was a complex character who often broke his own plain rules for living.