Charlotte Gray's biography of Alexander Graham Bell (Reluctant Genius:The Passionate Life and Inventive Mind of Alexander Graham Bell, HarperCollins), received reviews this weekend both in the Globe and Mail and the Toronto Star. Michael Smith in the Star noted in his review that Bell may have been the inventor of something besides the telephone:
Now I think of Bell as the inventor of one of the most ubiquitous objects in the modern world: the magazine subscription card. In 1897, as the financial backer of the struggling National Geographic Magazine, Bell re-launched the publication with an emphasis on lively writing and pictures that tell a story. And a nuisance was born — he included a blank subscription form in every copy. That anecdote is one of the highlights of Charlotte Gray's workmanlike examination of Bell's life and times.