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Struggles of Albert Woods Hardcover – 10 Oct 1985
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6 November 2015
Format: PaperbackVerified Purchase
This is still the best scientific novel I know. I have owned several copies, none of which have ever returned. The characters in the story are based on identifiable scientists. I commend this book to anyone who wants to know what life in the lab is really like; little has changed over the years.
12 January 2004
Format: HardcoverVerified Purchase
For a book written in the 1950s and set in the 1930s & 40s, "The Struggles of Albert Woods" manages to be as relevant and topical today as it was when it was first published. Beautifully written and exquisitely observed, the book tells the tale of the little man battling through the obsurdity of life as a research scientist. While much of the book will have scientists themselves chuckling in knowing amusement, the struggles of Albert's life are recorded in such sufficient and down-right hillarious detail so as to appeal to even the most unscientific of us. A triumphant presentation to a group of lofty Oxford academics that provokes nothing but a correction of his figures, and the fumbled courtship of a local lady in a car that has one door permanently jammed shut while the other flies open at every corner, are just two such examples of the broad appeal of Cooper's work. With a quirky writing style that is as amusing and endearing as the narrative itself, this is a treasure of a tale that I am glad to have added to my list of all-time favourites.
9 June 2015
The Struggles of Albert Woods" (1952) is about an organic chemist who works himself up from humble beginnings to become a Fellow of the Royal Society, but just falls short of getting a knighthood. A period piece, but highly recommended comic reading. Cooper (real name Harry S.Hoff) interviewed me for a UK civil service job in 1962 and gave me a hard time. He was a pal of C.P.Snow but he had more sense of humour than Snow.