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This book is wonderful! The story of these few men, their fabulous skyscrapers, the rush to build the tallest building, the detailed descriptions of building a highrise in the 1920's all together is better than most fiction I've read. I loved this book. (I happened on "Higher" after having read "Bobbed Hair and Bathtub Gin" and "The Great Gatsby" which are about the same era. All of this has now led me to "The Fountainhead" which has architecture as one of its themes -just suggestions for anyone interested in a very electric time and place in America).
5 of 5 people found this review helpful
This was a really great read on many different levels. First of all, the history of the race to build the highest skyscraper in New York (the focus of the book) was extremely interesting. Second, the history of the limiting factors to building height over the ages was also quite insightful. Third, the backgrounds of the men involved and the stories of their lives, both before and after the events in this book, was also worth the price of admission.
The epilogue, which covers the time from the completion of the Empire State Building to almost the present time, was a great strength of the book. Learning the financial woes, the ups and downs of the buildings throughout the 20th century and even the disasters that struck (literally) the buildings after their construction was fascinating.
Finally, the effect of the great depression on the history of the buildings and the men involved left you wondering what would have happened if the race had taken place in different economic times.
Kudos to the narrator, who also did a great job (even when character voices were employed using different nationalities and accents). Liked the book so well, that I may give paperback copies for gifts at Christmas.
Well worth the time invested - you won't be disappointed!
8 of 9 people found this review helpful