|Pages/Publication Date:||225 / 2018|
|Publisher:||Weidenfeld & Nicolson|
Did you know that the second man to swim the Channel drank 20 drops of champagne every hour? Or that the second crew to land on the Moon danced to a pop song in zero gravity? Or that the second person to run a sub-4-minute mile once stopped to check on a fallen rival—but still managed to win the race? You probably didn't, suggests Mark Mason, because seconds never get the attention they deserve. Arguing that "also-rans" can be intriguing and heroic, Mason profiles men and women who make second place look good, as well as the skyscrapers, deserts, and LPs that didn't quite make the grade.