Thursday, September 20, 2012
The Secret Lives of Codebreakers
(I thought I had this scheduled for earlier this month, but had left it in draft form. I read it in July, and it is scheduled for release Sept. 25.)
This is, perhaps, my favorite book this year. The Secret Lives of Codebreakers: The Men and Women Who Cracked the Enigma Code at Bletchley Park allows us a uniquely fascinating glimpse into the lives of those who worked at Bletchley Park during WWII, breaking the Enigma codes that the Germans and others considered unbreakable.
The author brings life to this secret world with interviews from many of the individuals who worked there during the war, keeping their activities secret from each other and from their families for decades. A remarkable and strangely lively look at the men and women whose secret work had everything to do with the success of the Allies in ending the war.
There were so many bookmarks on my Kindle that when I went over them, I found I'd bookmarked and highlighted way, way too much. However, the reason was simply that almost everything I found was fascinating--from the ordinary men and women involved to the genius of Alan Turing.
The book was exceptionally readable for a work of nonfiction; informative and entertaining at the same time. I really loved this book!
From Net Galley.
More About Bletchley Park:
(interesting blog review of Enigma)
Televison series: Danger UXB
Television documentary: Station X
fiction: Cryptonomicon by Neal Stephenson and All Clear by Connie Willis
Colossus: The Secrets of Bletchley Park's Codebreaking Computers by B. Jack Copeland
Alan Turing: The Enigma by Andrew Hodges
Seizing the Enigma: The Race to Break the German U-Boats Codes, 1939-1943 by David Kahn