Backroom Boys

Backroom Boys

Hardcover | English
ISBN13: 9780571214969
Condition: USED Quantity
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17 item(s) in stock
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Britain is the only country in the world to have cancelled its space programme just as it put its first rocket into orbit. Starting with this forgotten episode, this text tells the bitter-sweet story of how one country lost its industrial tradition and got something back. Sad, inspiring, funny and ultimately triumphant, it follows the technologists whose work kept Concorde flying, created the computer game, conquered the mobile-phone business, saved the human genome for the human race and who are now sending the Beagle 2 probe to burrow the cinnamon sands of Mars.

Type Book
Number Of Pages 272
Item Height 26 mm
Item Width 144 mm
Item Weight 399 Gram
Product Dimensions 144 x 26 x 214
Publisher Faber & Faber
Format Hardcover | 272

Described in the blurb as 'a vivid love-letter to quiet men in pullovers', this is a fascinating account of those ingenious engineers who invented the technologies of the future, often on a shoestring budget. It opens with the arrival of the first V2 noted by the British Interplanetary Society in a London pub, and we soon read of a surreal meeting between Arthur C Clark, the famous science-fiction writer, and C S Lewis. We learn how Britain cancelled its space program and how Ernest Benn was a good friend to Concorde. The story covers other technologies such as computer games, mobile telephones and mind-boggling efforts with the human genome. It makes for compulsive reading and is the sort of book only British endeavours could produce. It deserves to sell and sell.

Francis Spufford, a former Sunday Times Young Writer o f the Year (1977), has edited two acclaimed literary anthologies and a collection of essays on the history of technology. His first book, I May Be Some Time: Ice and the English Imagination, was awarded the Writers Guild Award for Best Non-Fiction Book of 1996 and a Somerset Maugham Award, and also inspired a Frankfurt Ballet production and a clown show at the Edinburgh Festival 2001. He lives in Camberwell, London.