Built: The Hidden Stories Behind Our Structures

Product Details
$19.99  $18.59
Bloomsbury Publishing
Publish Date
5.5 X 1.0 X 8.2 inches | 0.7 pounds

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About the Author

Roma Agrawal is a structural engineer who builds BIG--bridges, sculptures, train stations, and skyscrapers, including The Shard, western Europe's tallest tower. A promoter of technical careers to young people, she has written articles, done TEDx talks, and presented documentaries about building our world. She was awarded the Institution of Structural Engineers' Young Structural Engineer of the Year Award and the Royal Academy of Engineering's prestigious Rooke Award. She lives in London. romatheengineer.com @RomaTheEngineer


"Agrawal is a rarity: a female structural engineer in an adamantly male profession. A self-proclaimed 'geek, ' she shares her discoveries far above and below ground." --New York Times Book Review

"Conveys insight into the built environment in an unusually accessible style-the kind of insight that will help lay readers look differently at the world around them." --Wall Street Journal

"A delightful introduction to the science of engineering and those key in its development." --Kirkus Reviews

"Built is a welcome addition to the library of accessible reads on engineering. It is globally inclusive, provides personal insight into the life and achievements of a broadly accomplished female structural engineer, and teaches key engineering concepts in an approachable and engaging way." --Science Magazine

"Interweaving science, history, illustrations, and personal stories, Built offers a simply fascinating and impressively informative history of architecture, a subject that makes up the foundation of our everyday lives." --Midwest Book Review

"Makes engineering concepts easy to understand . . . [Agrawal] asks to reader to dream with her, look at the world before a problem is solved, then rejoice in the solution and all that it has meant to us as heirs of earlier genius. In short, she does the almost impossible; she makes engineering fun." --Manhattan Book Review

"Agrawal will vividly inform, enthuse, and inspire readers." --Booklist

"Structural engineer Agrawal introduces engineering to the masses in this enthusiastic, easy-to-read primer to her field of work." --Publishers Weekly

"Roma makes the complex principles of structural engineering accessible to everyone with clear explanations and engaging illustrations. It has made me suddenly look at every building I pass by in a new way!" --Ellen Stofan, former Chief Scientist at NASA

"Built is a terrific book--a necessary reminder of the wonderful human ingenuity behind the world's greatest engineering projects, from Roman aqueducts to London's magnificent Shard, which stands on foundations designed by the author herself. Lively, informative and exciting, Built will inspire readers of every stripe." --Erica Wagner, author of CHIEF ENGINEER

"Roma Agrawal's Built is a book about real engineering written by a real engineer who can really write." --Henry Petroski, author of THE ROAD NOT TAKEN: THE HISTORY AND FUTURE OF AMERICA'S INFRASTRUCTURE

"So many marvels of architecture involve feats of engineering that all too often go unsung. Roma Agrawal sets out to change that with Built, a passionate, often personal love letter to the science of structure that merges history, science, and storytelling. Whether exploring the ruins of Pompeii and the elegance of Bruneschelli's famous dome, plumbing the depths of sewers and tunnels, or gleaning insight into materials from baking a pineapple upside down cake, she takes the reader on a fantastic journey that will change the way you look at all the structures you take for granted." --Jennifer Ouellette, author of THE CALCULUS DIARIES and ME, MYSELF, AND WHY

"A pioneering engineer behind some of the world's tallest towers shares her enthusiasm and appreciation for her craft. The 'engineered universe is a narrative full of stories and secrets, ' Agrawal writes, and the book unveils many of the discipline's solutions to the world's problems. The astonishing ingenuity of engineers makes for fascinating reading." - New York Times Book Review