4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Great that it exists at all - but sadly otherwise less good,
This review is from: William Armstrong: Magician of the North (Hardcover)As other reviewers have said, Armstrong's key part in Victorian England is ludicrously neglected.
So a huge thanks to Henrietta Heald for the research and writing of it.
Unfortunately if it was a biography amongst many of someone more famous, it would not rate so very highly.
The best bits are: a) All the detail about the people who surrounded Armstrong's life. b) A good feel for the man is obtained. c) How often he met so many of the other contemporary "greats" not just of engineering, but also of pure science.
The poor parts are: a) The writing style, very much a first book. Chronology gets very confusing at times.
b) The variable but mostly extremely sparse details of the engineering.
This lack of information about his achievements is a great shame for anyone not otherwise aware of these things. If (perfectly reasonably) Henrietta Heald does not know/understand such details, I am sure there would have been several members of Durham or Newcastle University science or engineering depts who would have written a page or two descriptions of the technology involved, perhaps as appendixes ?. The book as a whole would be the better for it.