I went on a mini-spending spree this week -- mini because Vintage have recently cut their prices in Australia and are cheap as chips.

Graham Greene. Brighton Rock. London: Vintage Books, 2004 [1938]. 'Now a major motion picture'.

Aldous Huxley. Ape and Essence. London: Vintage Books, 2005 [1949]. I couldn't resist this after reading the blurb, which begins: 'In February 2108, the New Zealand Rediscovery Expedition reaches California.' Huxley's atomic war novel.

Nevil Shute. Slide Rule: The Autobiography of an Engineer. London: Vintage Books, 2009 [1954]. Shute's account of his early career as an aeronautical engineer, when he worked on the R100 and co-founded Airspeed. Vintage have reissued most, if not all, of Shute's back catalogue and I will no doubt be buying more of them!

Rex Warner. The Aerodrome: A Love Story. London: Vintage Books, 2007 [1941]. A book I've been wanting to read since before starting my PhD. Fascism and aviation in Deep England.

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7 thoughts on “Acquisitions

  1. George Shaner

    This entry jogged a memory of having read a novel when I was in high school in which some British aviation types are trying to sell a new fighter to the Air Ministry in the Twenties. I thought it was by Nevil Shute but this seems not to be the case. About all I remember otherwise is that the disgruntled entrepreneurs wind up selling the plane to Denmark!

  2. Davis X. Machina

    The Brighton Rock remake promised in 2004 is finally being released here in the US in early February.

  3. Post author


    It does sound very Shute though!


    Seems to be getting very mixed reviews, unfortunately. Pity - relocating it to the Mods and Rockers era seemed like a clever move, more intelligible to audiences today than pre-war Britain.


    Yes... although it also makes it sound like any number of post-apocalyptic SF stories set in the nuclear wastelands. The difference being that none of the others were written by Aldous Huxley!

  4. 'Slide Rule' - an often overlooked important work - how many other firsthand accounts by aircraft designers who could also cut it as writers (in the pre-1950s) are there out there? None? Assuming that, it's a unique insight to an important part of aviation's development; and so much more significant than a barnload of pilots' 'I was there' ego trips.

    Scary to think I've got two of the above, read two of the above (not the same two, though!) one of which was studied at school with a day trip to the locale...

  5. Yup! However I've since also been on the airfield that was used for the TV series of The Aerodrome.

    You realise I'm actually going to have to read Warner's work now, don't you?

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