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Old 07-11-2017, 04:44 PM   #5
bfisher
Wizard
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Join Date: Sep 2011
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3 1/2 stars for me. I was fascinated by the subject - the intersection of the struggles for women for workplace equality, for African-Americans for equality, and of humanity for reaching space.

Quote:
Originally Posted by issybird View Post
There's a good story here, but for me it's getting lost in the purple prose.
I'm with you on that; the story suffers from overblown prose. I didn't find this a problem at the beginning, but it was becoming wearying in the back end. But because it had a great story at its heart, it kept me going.

Quote:
Originally Posted by issybird View Post
That said, I'm fascinated by the world-building, early days at Langley. For me it's a case of knowing the generalities of the creation of the US war machine, but being entirely ignorant of the particulars related here. I think specifics make for much more evocative history than broad swaths.
Yes, it is a wonderful view of the proto-NASA where we can see something of the people at the working level.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CRussel View Post
Yes, a totally dispassionate narrative might be more historically appropriate, but, frankly, if the story isn't good enough to get the author excited, what's the chance I will be.
Absolutely. What saved the book for me was that it was mostly a
story about the lives of identifiable people, brought forth from the shadows.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CRussel View Post
Even the term 'computers' as it applies to people was unknown to me until more recent years when talking about some of the events of WWII around the Enigma machine.
Female human computers were actually on the scene in an earlier space-race, and as usual, they enjoyed the opportunity for less pay and much less possibility of advancement (plus change, meme chose)

The Harvard computers:
http://www.smithsonianmag.com/histor...spect-9287444/

Their contributions are also mentioned in
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/...d-the-universe




Quote:
Originally Posted by CRussel View Post
Finally, I would argue that the

'obsession' that leads to perhaps overwritten prose, is what

ultimately drives the level of detail here.
Sometimes it is possible to have a bit too much detail.

Last edited by bfisher; 07-11-2017 at 04:46 PM.
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