Thursday, 15 March 2012

Book Review - Glock: The Rise of America's Gun

Not really a handgun kind of guy myself [air pistols aside I've only ever fired an S&W 1911] but I do enjoy a bit of riflery and know a few enthusiasts, as Glock is such a touchstone of the culture I was interested in the story behind the icon. I wasn't disappointed, I would defiantly put this one in the upper tier of business books/corporate histories. It's a really interesting tale.

An outsider who'd never even owned firearms, and whose shooting experience made even mine seem comprehensive, starts with a clean sheet of paper and re-invents the pistol. An ingenious salesman sees the wind change for American law enforcement - wheel guns are out: it's not 'is it going to be an automatic pistol?' its 'which automatic pistol is it going to be?' - and seizes the day.
Ably assisted by lap dancers, with press and promotion by anti-gun pressure groups, and added profits generated by the assault weapons ban, team Glock turn an obscure Austrian radiator manufacturer into a major industrialist, his invention into a design icon and cultural phenomenon.

If you're hoping for pages of technical detail about the differences between Gaston Glock's design and that of his competitors you'll be better off reading or perhaps The Gun Digest Book of the Glock.  If you find stories of corporate opportunism and intrigue are to your taste you'll not be disappointed. I've always loved stories of the little team no one has ever heard of, rocking up and changing the game, Glock certainly did that. Well worth a read.

One from the 'ya couldn't make it up files'

Shaven-headed bearded muslim chap, my age, sitting next to me on the train.
"You're reading that and no one's even looking, if I was reading it they'd be pulling the emergency cord". Yep we laughed out loud.

On the blogging front
Not been out and about much lately, but I have been reading some great books, so more book reviews to come, some local history with suburban hunters and, funds permitting, a very special trip to meet another blogger or two. Before the chalk streams dry up completely I'm hoping this season is 'the season' I'll fulfil that longstanding ambition of catching a wild trout within the city limits

More Soon
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