The Last Days of Night by Graham Moore

last-days-of-night

This historical fiction account of the race in discovering and becoming notable for electricity and the light bulb is fascinating and compelling read.  The book chronicles the rivalry between Thomas Edison and George Westinghouse and begins when Thomas Edison has filed 312 lawsuits against George Westinghouse for producing his light bulb.  The story is told through George Westinghouse’s young fresh out of law school attorney, Paul Cravath.  The cast of characters include eccentric genius Nikola Tesla, singer Agnes Huntington, J.P. Morgan, and Alexander Bell to name a few.The author does an excellent job of describing a time period of much invention and the race to get ahead and profit from new discoveries.  The book has it all – interesting characters and an interesting story line full of intrigue, suspense, dirty deeds, unexpected twists, and even a little romance.

“Who had invented the light bulb? That was the question that started the whole story off. It was all of them. Only together could they have birthed the system that was now the bone and sinew of these United States. No one man could have done it. In order to produce such a wonder, Paul realized, the world required men like each of them. Visionaries like Tesla. Craftsmen like Westinghouse. Salesmen like Edison.”

I listened to the audio version of the book narrated by Johnathan McClain.  At the end of the novel there is an author’s note that details information used for his research, the fictionalized parts, details of changes in chronology and time frames and interesting additional details.

 

 

 

 

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