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The Explorer Gene travels beyond the pages…


The story behind our upcoming release The Explorer Gene continued beyond the pages last month when Bertrand Piccard landed in New York on 6th July, 11.09pm EDT, in a plane powered entirely by the sun.

As reported in The Guardian, The Times, and The Telegraph, Piccard carried on the family tradition of extraordinary feats as he navigated a grueling six-leg journey across the United States in the solar-powered plane. He battled against extreme winds, at one point causing a 2.5m tear in one of the wings, as well as his own bladder (what the plane made up for in innovation, it seemed to lack in terms of basic amenities).

Bertrand comes from a long line of dreamers and innovators. In his riveting The Explorer Gene, Tom Cheshire investigates and charts the journey of this extraordinary family; beginning with Auguste Piccard, the first human to enter the stratosphere in a balloon of his own design, and then following his son Jacques to the bottom of the earth, descending to the Mariana Trench in a submarine built by him and Auguste, and ultimately reaching the current day with the achievements of Bertrand.

It’s little surprise that this is the same family that inspired James Cameron to undertake his own deep-sea dive to the Mariana Trench in 2012. In his foreword for the book, he describes how the Piccards ‘inspired subsequent generations of explorers, myself included.’ Bertrand, whom he now considers a close friend, ‘is continuing the family tradition of representing that which is great within us all.’

Yet Bertrand’s ambitions stretch further than just a simple flight across a continent however – following up on his non-stop around the world balloon flight in 1999, adjustments are already being made to the plane in order circumnavigate the globe in 2015.

Make sure to follow his journey in the build-up to our release of Tom Cheshire’s spellbinding The Explorer Gene on September 5th!

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“This book is the story of three extraordinary men, representing three generations of a family whose name will resound through history as synonymous with exploration.”

–James Cameron, Foreword to The Explorer Gene