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Boilerplate: History's Mechanical Marvel Hardcover – October 1, 2009
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Top Customer Reviews
The fact that this book is so well executed, so convincing that a person will ignore common sense, a basic grounding in history and even the slightest knowledge of engineering to believe that Boilerplate was real only attests to the skill, talent and vision of the artist.
But the book isn't just a wonderful fantasy. Folded into the history is a pointed commentary on subjects which are still pertinent a century later. Boilerplate is a mute witness to to early movements for workers' and women's rights. It fights alongside the Buffalo Soldiers and sees action in the Philippine-American War, Spanish-American War and WWI, fighting both in the trenches and with T. E. Lawrence, in Arabia. While the narrative never becomes preachy, only a fairly obtuse reader could fail to understand the point of history as it's presented here. This is not a book likely to appeal to people whose beliefs run to the right of the political spectrum.
"Robot", a word not in existence when Boilerplate itself was supposed to have been created, derives from a word that means "forced labor." (Karel Capek, R.U.R., 1920) Even the name, "Boilerplate" suggests a kind of non-existence, something that only serves as a model for the real thing.Read more ›
But I never in a million years would have expected this much story! The sheer number of photos, paintings, and illustrations is staggering. The way Boilerplate is subtly woven into history is a treat as well, since the "light touch approach" allows the reader to actually learn a good deal of history along the way.
Besides praising the creators of this fantastic book, I really want to praise the publishers. I'm sure they were sold on the quality of the material, but the way this book has been put together speaks more of love. This is a handsomely prepared book that should withstand years and years of enjoyment. I'm so happy to have it in my library, and so proud to be able to share it with my friends.
I found this book quite by accident when the author's booth at WonderCon was my family's last stop of the long, tiring day. It only took a moment of scanning through this stunning, high-quality book to understand its genius. Although I find the robot's face to be personally creepy, the concept, story, history, illustration, layout, and photo compositing are simply outstanding. I have never seen a higher quality book. If you like steam-punk, history, sci-fi, mockumentaries, fiction-as-reality, illustration, or high-concept, BUY THIS BOOK. It's a steal at Amazon's price. It's also endlessly entertaining, EDUCATIONAL, and inspirational. Bravo.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Paul Guinan has seamlessly created a parallel universe chockablock with humor and befuddlements to engage all who would cross the threshold.Published 4 months ago by Jimmy Hickey
Super cool book... If you didn't know better you'd think he was an actual part of history and not fictitious.Published 6 months ago by Brewer
This book could have been such a fun way to learn some history but is instead marred by the blatant anti-US tirade throughout. Read morePublished 17 months ago by R. Fletcher
Really imaginative and well done. Boilerplate is seamlessly inserted into history.Published on August 5, 2014 by Melinda
The story of Boilerplate makes you believe he actually existed. The photos had been photoshopped perfectly so it was difficult to tell that Boilerplate was not really in them when... Read morePublished on August 12, 2013 by Hal Allert