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Strange Air

av Tom Brown

MedlemmarRecensionerPopularitetGenomsnittligt betygOmnämnanden
4Ingen/inga2,837,655 (4)5
About the book 'What a peculiar and wonderful novel Strange Air is . . . A true page-turner, whose ultimate outcome is as unpredictable as a blindfolded interchange at Earl's Court.' (Matt Brown, Londonist) It is the mid-19th century, and London is crying out for a cure to the congestion on its streets. Knowing that some kind of underground railway will provide the solution, civil engineer Thomas Webster Rammell fights against the odds to realise his dream of air-powered 'pneumatic' trains - so saving his fellow citizens from the unimaginable horrors of subterranean steam. Meanwhile, in present-day London, ex-tube driver Eric walks amid the ruins of the old Crystal Palace. It's a strange, ghostly place, and gets stranger still when he is attacked by a vengeful skeleton, lurking in a buried Victorian railway carriage. Inspired by two true stories, Strange Air interweaves the irresistible tale of one of the Victorians' most fantastic inventions with the fate of the Crystal Palace in South London. An exhilarating blend of railway history and suburban fairytale, the novel reveals how close one man came to changing the history of London's public transport - and exposes the truth behind the fiery demise of the once-mighty 'people's Palace'. Essential reading for anyone fascinated by the history of the Crystal Palace - and for fans of mind-boggling Victorian railway history . . . The world's first Airpunk novel Strange Air dates back to 2008, when Tom Brown went for a walk with his girlfriend in Crystal Palace Park. 'I take it you know about the skeletons,' she said. 'Buried in a tunnel. Trapped in a Victorian railway carriage.' 'What?' he exclaimed. 'Oh yes,' she said casually. 'People have seen them, apparently.' Tom dashed home and went straight on the internet. People had indeed seen the skeletons - the rumours were true! - and it was all tied up with a bizarre 'pneumatic railway' trial that took place in the grounds of the Crystal Palace in 1864. A railway powered by air? In Crystal Palace? It sounded like the stuff of fiction, so Tom went looking for a book about it. A Steampunk kind of thing. Something rich in detail, atmosphere and imagination, but with a solid base of historical accuracy. Alas, he couldn't find the book he wanted - so he had to write it himself. The result is the world's first Airpunk novel: a macabre horror-comedy which chronicles a century-and-a-half of Crystal Palace Park history, while simultaneously hurtling down a little-explored siding of Victorian railway history. Effortlessly fusing meticulous research with gold-standard urban myth, Strange Air is a tale of grand ideas in the grandest of cities. From the book 'I heaved in a gasp of horror and astonishment. For what I was looking at was no animal; it was no living thing at all. The whiteness was the white of bone, and the bone belonged to a human hand: a skeleton's hand, glowing in the mist above a slender wrist, all of a piece, functioning together, yet with nothing between each bone. No ligaments, no tendons, no muscle: just air.'… (mer)
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About the book 'What a peculiar and wonderful novel Strange Air is . . . A true page-turner, whose ultimate outcome is as unpredictable as a blindfolded interchange at Earl's Court.' (Matt Brown, Londonist) It is the mid-19th century, and London is crying out for a cure to the congestion on its streets. Knowing that some kind of underground railway will provide the solution, civil engineer Thomas Webster Rammell fights against the odds to realise his dream of air-powered 'pneumatic' trains - so saving his fellow citizens from the unimaginable horrors of subterranean steam. Meanwhile, in present-day London, ex-tube driver Eric walks amid the ruins of the old Crystal Palace. It's a strange, ghostly place, and gets stranger still when he is attacked by a vengeful skeleton, lurking in a buried Victorian railway carriage. Inspired by two true stories, Strange Air interweaves the irresistible tale of one of the Victorians' most fantastic inventions with the fate of the Crystal Palace in South London. An exhilarating blend of railway history and suburban fairytale, the novel reveals how close one man came to changing the history of London's public transport - and exposes the truth behind the fiery demise of the once-mighty 'people's Palace'. Essential reading for anyone fascinated by the history of the Crystal Palace - and for fans of mind-boggling Victorian railway history . . . The world's first Airpunk novel Strange Air dates back to 2008, when Tom Brown went for a walk with his girlfriend in Crystal Palace Park. 'I take it you know about the skeletons,' she said. 'Buried in a tunnel. Trapped in a Victorian railway carriage.' 'What?' he exclaimed. 'Oh yes,' she said casually. 'People have seen them, apparently.' Tom dashed home and went straight on the internet. People had indeed seen the skeletons - the rumours were true! - and it was all tied up with a bizarre 'pneumatic railway' trial that took place in the grounds of the Crystal Palace in 1864. A railway powered by air? In Crystal Palace? It sounded like the stuff of fiction, so Tom went looking for a book about it. A Steampunk kind of thing. Something rich in detail, atmosphere and imagination, but with a solid base of historical accuracy. Alas, he couldn't find the book he wanted - so he had to write it himself. The result is the world's first Airpunk novel: a macabre horror-comedy which chronicles a century-and-a-half of Crystal Palace Park history, while simultaneously hurtling down a little-explored siding of Victorian railway history. Effortlessly fusing meticulous research with gold-standard urban myth, Strange Air is a tale of grand ideas in the grandest of cities. From the book 'I heaved in a gasp of horror and astonishment. For what I was looking at was no animal; it was no living thing at all. The whiteness was the white of bone, and the bone belonged to a human hand: a skeleton's hand, glowing in the mist above a slender wrist, all of a piece, functioning together, yet with nothing between each bone. No ligaments, no tendons, no muscle: just air.'

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