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The Secret Lives of Codebreakers: The Men…

The Secret Lives of Codebreakers: The Men and Women Who Cracked the Enigma… (original 2010; edition 2012)

by Sinclair McKay

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3031636,938 (3.62)8
Title:The Secret Lives of Codebreakers: The Men and Women Who Cracked the Enigma Code at Bletchley Park
Authors:Sinclair McKay
Info:Plume (2012), Edition: Reprint, Paperback, 352 pages
Collections:Your library

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The Secret Life of Bletchley Park by Sinclair McKay (2010)



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The history of the code-breaking efforts during WWII, focusing on those happening Bletchley Park against Germany's Enigma code system. I was particularly impressed by McKay's description of various code making and breaking techniques--I felt like I actually understood it for once! ( )
  wealhtheowwylfing | Feb 29, 2016 |
This is a well researched and multi faceted historical account of the people of Bletchley Park. The balance between facts and interpretation made this a page turner for me with my limited existing knowledge of the details of the time and place. ( )
  BridgitDavis | Feb 26, 2016 |
This is a very readable account of the activities and lives of the thousands of men and women who in conditions of essential and near absolute secrecy laboured to break German cipher codes during the Second World War, particularly those codes transmitted on the famous Enigma machines, which were originally developed back in the 1920s for commercial use by German banks, before being bought up by the Weimar Republic government and made further secure by the Nazis. But this is much more than a book about the mechanics of code-breaking. This tells the stories of those men and women in their own words: how they were recruited; how they coped with the pressure of having to exercise a high degree of intellectual rigour, while knowing that a single mistake could change military fortunes and cost lives; and how they were bound by secrecy to tell nothing of their work, either during the war or in subsequent decades, until the story of Bletchley Park became generally known in the 1970s. Their contribution was for a long time therefore unsung, and they did not have the satisfaction and personal catharsis that former soldiers, statesmen and others had of recounting their wartime experiences. But it is clear that their actions hugely helped the British and Allied war effort and that, without this patient, unseen work, the outcome of the War might have been very different. ( )
  john257hopper | Oct 11, 2015 |
I read this just before visiting Bletchley Park in July. It gave me a good insight into life at the secret WWII code breaking establishment. Written in an easy style covering many aspects of history, personalities, secrecy technology and perseverance.
( )
  GeoffSC | May 31, 2015 |
A fascinating account of an amazing episode in 20th century British history. Thoroughly researched and well-written. A great read. ( )
1 vote rosiezbanks | Feb 26, 2015 |
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Sarah Baring - and her good friend Osla Henniker-Major - received the summons by means of a terse telegram.
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Bletchley Park in the Buckinghamshire countryside was home to Britain's most brilliant mathematical brains and the scene of immense advances in technology, like the birth of modern computing. This book tells the story of what it was like to work there during the war.… (more)

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