Defying Gravity: Land Divers, Roller Coasters, Gravity Bums, and the Human Obsession with Falling (Paperback)

Defying Gravity: Land Divers, Roller Coasters, Gravity Bums, and the Human Obsession with Falling By Garrett Soden Cover Image

Defying Gravity: Land Divers, Roller Coasters, Gravity Bums, and the Human Obsession with Falling (Paperback)

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"Riveting....A must-read history of daredevilry and gravity sports."—San Francisco Chronicle


Defying Gravity tells the astonishing story of how gravity pioneers transformed an ancient terror—the sensation of falling—into the modern thrill that powers extreme sports, monstrous amusement rides, and a youth culture obsessed with "getting air." It's a hair-raising tour, with nineteenth-century parachutists plummeting to their deaths before thousands, British lords tumbling from Alpine peaks, Hollywood stuntmen dropping from biplanes to freight trains, drunken carousers outrunning police to make the world's first bungee jump, and X Games athletes such as stunt bike rider Mat Hoffman explaining their bone-breaking passion. Garrett Soden follows the evolutionary trail back to our acrobatic primate ancestors and delves deep into the psychology of sensation seekers.  Originally published in hardcover under the title Falling.
Garrett Soden is the author of several books, including I Went to College for This? and Hook Spin Buzz. He lives in Pasadena, California.
Product Details ISBN: 9780393326567
ISBN-10: 039332656X
Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company
Publication Date: April 17th, 2005
Pages: 354
Language: English
A sharply observed exploration of the massive appeal of gravity feats.
— Booklist

Enthralling.
— National Geographic Adventure

Fun, informative, provocative and filled with enthusiasm.
— Publishers Weekly

A provocative, well-researched book.
— Washington Post