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May 2009
Dry Store Room Number One - Richard Fortey
* * * *
How refreshing to encounter an author who knows his genre fiction. The comparison between the Natural History Museum (NHM) and the setting of Mervin Peake's famous trilogy is Fortey's own and is entirely apt. Beyond the grand public halls of that magnificent Gothic building, through the doors marked "private", lie a warren of store rooms, laboratories and offices inhabited by unusual specimens of humanity engaged in mysterious and arcane practices. But though obscure, the work of these dedicated individuals has helped win wars, avert major epidemics and expand human knowledge, and as a reader I feel privileged to have learned something of their secret world.
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