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Old 04-01-2018, 03:01 AM   #3
gmw
cacoethes scribendi
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Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Australia
Device: Kobo Aura One & H2Ov2, Sony PRS-650
I decided to go non-fiction for my nomination, it gets me away from all those historical fiction novels I looked at for the time-ly theme. Following is a book I discovered during research for one of my projects, and I was impressed with how well it was done.

Concrete Planet by Robert Courland
The Strange and Fascinating Story of the World's Most Common Man-Made Material

Amazon US - $12.99 | Amazon UK - £10.44 | Amazon CA - CDN$9.99 | Amazon AU - AUD$10.97 | Kobo US - USD$12.99 | Kobo UK £8.99 | Kobo CA - CAD$10.69 | Kobo AU AUD$15.06

From Goodreads:
Quote:
Concrete: We use it for our buildings, bridges, dams, and roads. We walk on it, drive on it, and many of us live and work within its walls. But very few of us know what it is. We take for granted this ubiquitous substance, which both literally and figuratively comprises much of modern civilization’s constructed environment; yet the story of its creation and development features a cast of fascinating characters and remarkable historical episodes. This book delves into this history, opening readers’ eyes at every turn. [...]
A relevant quote from the introduction explains what to expect: "This is not a technical book [...] it is the human story of concrete, with emphasis on the people who discovered—and rediscovered—this building material, and who also pioneered novel ways of using it."

Most of us will have read fantasy stories where the ancients held great secrets, with concrete that has been true: for centuries it appeared the secret of making strong concrete had died with the Romans. We do now know how they did it, but the author laments that - unlike the Romans - we continue to make buildings, and even memorials, that may not long outlast the generation that built them.

Prices of non-fiction tend to be inconsistent and often high. When I bought this book four years ago I got it for under AUD$10 from Kobo, but now they are asking AUD$15 (Amazon.com.au is better). I see the UK costs are quite high, but hopefully you can get it at a library or shop around for a better deal.
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