Secret Weapons: Death Rays, Doodlebugs, and Churchill’s Golden Goose
When it comes to innovation across all fields of science and technology, it’s hard to find a more prolific or influential time period than the Second World War. From weapons to medicine, clothing to electronics, a staggering number of inventions both mundane and monstrous can trace their lineage to the days of the Allies battling the Axis Powers.
In Secret Weapons: Death Rays, Doodlebugs, and Churchill’s Golden Goose, Ford regales the reader with dozens of stories of technological development during wartime, mixing wondrous breakthroughs with unsettling horrors in order to give the reader the full spectrum of militarized development. From gliders forgotten by the submarines that launched them to the secret behind the Dam Busters’ bouncing bomb, Ford’s research is first-rate and his attention to detail is undeniable. (At least when it comes to militaria. He did attribute Star Wars to Steven Spielberg.)
Admittedly, “Doomed to Fail” was my favorite chapter despite the lighthearted intent, if only because it’s rather sobering to compare the insane ideas that didn’t work with the insane ideas that did. And that’s the real dichotomy of Secret Weapons: it’s fascinating, but horrifying. Nonetheless, it’s a worthwhile chronicle of an unforgettable time in innovation.
Chris Hayden has been working at City Book Review since 2012, so that makes him the keeper of knowledge. He manages the office and book reviewers (all 200 of them!), which is no small feat. If you’re looking at the book reviews here, you’re seeing them because he sent the books out for review. Without him, this place would fall apart, because no one else in the office knows how to use the postage machine. Two words: job security.
|Author||Brian J. Ford|
|Page Count||280 pages|
|Amazon||Buy this Book|