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on 27 October 2014
Great short story, as usual
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on 21 June 2013
This short story is just the thing if you have some time on your hands, several of the chemicals that are in this story are real and act exactly as described in the story. What a great way to weave real and unreal things together.
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VINE VOICEon 4 May 2015
One thing that keeps me coming back to Charles Stross and avidly collecting his books is his frequently dark sense of humour.

That's certainly the case in his Laundry Files novels. Occasional bits of lunacy and exasperation mean his Sci-Fi benefits from the same approach and therefore doesn't become a turgid slog through technobabble. In this short story, Charlie himself seems to be the central character.

Is this a true story? Well Charlie does state he attended the kind of events in the story. That makes this a tale that can be believed no matter its outlandish premise, that space agencies investigated and even tested hugely damaging propellants in the search for range and power.

Excellent writing that leaves the reader wondering just whether there is a strand of truth in this eye-opening tale of madness and espionage in the rocket industry
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on 2 September 2013
Surprised this hasn't become an urban legend like the US gov being behind 9/11.A brilliant read. And who knows, it may be true!!!!! (Bearing in mind Pratchett's observation about exclamation marks...).

Fact and fiction cleverly woven into a seamless tale, as Charlie is wont to do so well. Wish he'd do more of "A Colder War" type tales though.
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on 2 September 2013
An interesting anecdote from one of my favourite authors. On first reading didn't rate it that highly, but it has popped back into my head several times since then, so it must have made an impression.
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on 29 June 2014
Nice quick read, ideal for a tube journey. Leaves you with some interesting thoughts.
Super geeky helps if you are a chemist. Either made up or possibly true ;-)
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on 31 March 2016
A very short story that seamlessly blends fact with fiction and triggered many happy hours of research checking out the facts ...
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on 19 November 2013
The author spins a marvelous tale of good physics and cold-war era deception. Very much worth reading, and thinking about.
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on 3 August 2013
you can read more about this at Tor books
[...]

"is by Charles Stross, a British SF author who now lives in Scotland"
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on 26 July 2014
A day in the life of the mind of Mr Stross - an enjoyable short story.
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