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The first edition of 'Time Traveller Danny and the Codebreaker' came out in 2012, the centenary of Alan Turing's birth, when there were still many adults, never mind children, who did not know of Turing's role in the top-secret work at Bletchley Park deciphering the German enigma code in World War 2, nor did they know of the part he played in the emerging science of computers. Much has changed since then. There has been a film about his life and work and the country has tried to make amends for their dreadful treatment of gay people including Alan Turing in the 1950's. In 2013 the Queen issued a royal pardon. In our new edition we are publishing the text of the official public apology made be the then prime minister, Gordon Brown in 2009. This alone makes this a commemorative edition, but we have done more to make this a special book.
Readers can still enjoy the exciting adventure created by Paul Morris, the author. Although the adventure relies on time travel, the historical elements were carefully researched and that has made the book popular with both children and the adults who know much of the history. The main protagonist, Danny travels back in time and meets Alan Turing first as a young boy. He is cycling over 40 miles to his new school because the general strike had cancelled public transport. This, of course, is a factual occurrence and it would not take much to imagine that on this long ride a young boy might feel like giving up or that something unexpected happens, both possibilities used by Paul to draw in the reader. Then there follows a much more dangerous meeting in the secret world of Bletchley Park.
Through talks and workshops featuring his book, Paul has inspired children and adults to find out more about Alan Turing, his life and his work. and this led to the inclusion in this special edition of the very best pieces of writing by children and young people who entered our 2018/19 writing competition. The outstanding quality of their work is a very fitting and touching tribute to Professor Turing.
Another addition is the list of books, supplied to us by the Sherborne librarian that the schoolboy, Alan borrowed from the school library - surely of special interest to all librarians and teachers.
Finally, we have teamed up with our very own cryptographer, Jo Welch, who has provided three coded messages for readers to crack. How will readers know if they have cracked these codes? Can you keep a secret and never every tell? - the mantra of those serving in Bletchley Park during World War 2.
30 April 2020
(first published 12 October 2012)
Seven Arches Publishing
2nd Enhanced edition