Not Terribly Good Book of Heroic Failure

Onward and Downward!
Stephen Pile


All successful people are the same (you know, drive, will to win, determination) – it's just too dull to contemplate. But everyone who messes up big time does so in a way that is completely individual.

  • Step forward the fifty Mexican convicts who dug an escape tunnel out of their jail and came up in the courtroom before the judge who sentenced them.
  • Please welcome the world's worst tourist who spent two days in New York believing he was in Rome.
  • Be thrilled by the man who wrote an English-Portuguese phrasebook without either knowing English or owning an English-Portuguese dictionary.
  • And marvel at the least successful kamikaze pilot who returned from eleven suicide missions, lived to the age of 93 and went on to write an autobiography in which he claimed planes were unsafe.

The Not Terribly Good Book of Heroic Failures shows that there really is no limit to what humanity can achieve, celebrating the vast, life-enhancing possibilities of getting it wrong.


  • Format
  • Pages
  • Size
    200 x 130mm
  • Publisher
    Faber & Faber
  • ISBN
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