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Reach For The Skies: Ballooning, Birdmen & Blasting Into Space [Paperback-2011]
Richard Branson
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Description

Category:History- GeneralGeneralGeneral History-Geh
Publisher: Virgin Uk | ISBN: 9780753519875 | Pages: 352

AS FAR BACK AS STORIES GO, PIONEERS HAVE REACHED FOR THE SKIES. IN THE LAST TWO HUNDRED YEARS, THEY HAVE MASTERED THE AIR AND MADE THE MODERN WORLD POSSIBLE. TODAY THEY ARE BRINGING OUTER SPACE WITHIN OUR REACH. THEY RE INVENTORS AND TOYMAKERS, AMATEURS AND ADVENTURERS, VISIONARIES, DREAMERS AND, YES, CRACKPOTS. SOME HAVE CALLED THEM IRRESPONSIBLE, EVEN DANGEROUS. BUT RICHARD BRANSON HAS MET MANY OF THEM. HE HAS WORKED WITH THEM, FUNDED THEM, AND FLOWN WITH THEM. HE ADMIRES THEM, AND TRUSTS THEM, AND THINKS THEY AND THEIR KIND ARE OUR FUTURE. IN THIS BOOK RICHARD BRANSON LOOKS AT THE HISTORY OF FLIGHT THROUGH THE STORIES AND PEOPLE WHO HAVE INSPIRED HIM THROUGHOUT HIS LIFE. IN THESE PAGES YOU WILL FIND TALES OF MIRACULOUS RESCUES; OF RECORDS MADE AND BROKEN; OF SURPRISING FEATS OF ENDURANCE AND SURVIVAL, INCLUDING SOME OF HIS OWN ADVENTURES, AS WELL AS DEVELOPMENTS IN THE FUTURE OF AIR (AND SPACE) TRAVEL. IT IS A STORY OF PIONEERS, AND OF COURSE IT INCLUDES THE WORLD FAMOUS MONTGOLFIERS AND THE WRIGHT BROTHERS, BUT HE ALSO WANTS TO DESCRIBE SOME OF THE LESSER-KNOWN TRAILBLAZERS. PEOPLE LIKE TONY JANNUS, WHO IN 1914 CREATED THE FIRST SCHEDULED COMMERCIAL FLIGHT IN THE WORLD, FLYING HIS PASSENGERS OVER THE WATERS OF TAMPA BAY AT AN ALTITUDE OF JUST FIFTY FEET! THE BIRD MAN LEO VALENTIN, WHO IN THE 1950S JUMPED FROM 9,000 FEET WITH WOODEN WINGS ATTACHED TO HIS SHOULDERS. AND BRANSON S FRIEND STEVE FOSSETT, WHO DEDICATED HIS LIFE TO BREAKING RECORDS AND HAVING ADVENTURES. THIS IS THEIR STORY. IT IS ALSO, IN A SMALL WAY, HIS OWN.

About the Author

Richard Branson was born in 1950 and educated at Stowe School. It was here that he began to set up Student Magazine when he was just 16. By 17 hed also set up Student Advisory Centre, which was a charity to help young people. In 1970 he founded Virgin as a mail order record retailer, and not long after he opened a record shop in Oxford Street, London. During 1972 a recording studio was built in Oxfordshire, and the first Virgin artist, Mike Oldfield, recorded "Tubular Bells" which was released in 1973. This album went on to sell over 5 million copies. Since then many household names, including Belinda Carlisle, Genesis, Phil Collins, Janet Jackson and The Rolling Stones have helped to make Virgin Music one of the top six record companies in the world. The equity of Virgin Music Group - record labels, music publishing, and recording studios was sold to THORN EMI in 1992 in a US$1billion deal. The Virgin Group has now expanded into international music Megastores, air travel, mobile, financial, retail, music, internet, drinks, rail, hotels and leisure, with around 200 companies in over 30 countries. Richard is married with two children and spends most of his time at his home on Necker Island.

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