“Hilarious, enlightening and inspiring The Man with His Head in the Clouds is anything but ordinary. Smith has artfully created a category-defying juxtaposition of historical biography and autobiographical recovery story. . . fun and accessible."
The Psychologist

The Man with His Head in the Clouds

James Sadler: The First Englishman to Fly

Richard O. Smith

“All human life is here, served up with a light touch and keen sense of the ridiculous.” —Dr Lucy Worsley

“Very, very funny.”
Lucy Porter

“Pure pleasure… A brilliant blend of biography and self-help, and a bold book about ballooning, The Man with His Head in the Clouds is nothing less than a trip.”
Frances Wilson

“The Man with his Head in the Clouds” is James Sadler.
He is also me.

Sadler was the first Englishman to fly. I was the first Englishman to be diagnosed with both acute acrophobia (height anxiety) and bathmophobia (an irrational fear of stairs). This explains why I have never been a high-flyer, high-achiever or high anything. I don’t even like legal highs, especially ladders. Suffering from a full house (or as I prefer, a full bungalow) of height anxieties means recruiting counsellors and phobia experts because…

Did I mention I plan to replicate Sadler’s first historic balloon flight?

RICHARD O. SMITH is a comedy writer who contributes material to Radio 4’s The Now Show, The News Quiz and BBC 2’s Dara O’Briain’s Science Club. He is the author of Britain’s Most Eccentric Sports, Oxford Student Pranks, and As Thick as Thieves and co-wrote the screenplay for the film The Unbeatables, which features the voice talent of Rupert Grint and is released this summer.

£14.99 hardback

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288 pages
May 2014