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The "Radio Times" Story [Large Print] [Paperback]

Tony Currie
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)

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Product details

  • Paperback: 260 pages
  • Publisher: Kelly Publications; Large type edition edition (1 Mar 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1903053099
  • ISBN-13: 978-1903053096
  • Product Dimensions: 27.6 x 21.2 x 2.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 257,631 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


The author's fascination with Radio Times began when he was six, and he has been a collector ever since. Over the years he has become the foremost expert on the magazine's history and content. This book is packed with information about the development of the world's oldest listing magazine over the 78 years of its existence, as well as many amusing anecdotes. In addition to telling the fascinating story of the magazine, the book is also a social history of British broadcasting. Profusely illustrated, this is an impressive volume which will appeal to anybody with fond memories of browsing through copies of Radio Times over the years.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An essential purchase - but flawed 29 Jan 2003
If you're in any way interested in the Radio Times, this book is a must. It covers the history of the Radio Times from its inception in 1923 until the departure of Sue Robinson in 2000, and it does so illustrated by cover after cover, many of them in colour. It's obviously a work of love and devotion, by an author fascinated by his subject.
However, it is not the definitive history of Radio Times - that has yet to be written. It fails to fully address many of the issues surrounding TV listings, particularly in the last two decades, or place the magazine in a broader context. Major points, such as the shift of editorial control of billings from BBC producers to Radio Times staff in the 1980s, aren't even mentioned, while others which had a significant impact on the content of the magazine, such as the introduction of new technology for printing and editing, are glossed over in a few short paragraphs.
The book also pays relatively little attention to the actual content and presentation of the listings pages. Rather surprisingly for a book about a TV and radio listings magazine, there are very few pictures of the actual listings themselves, or much commentary on how they have evolved over the years. The emphasis is very much on the covers - admittedly more interesting visually, but not always the heart of the magazine.
I hope I don't sound too damning, because I really enjoyed this book and value it as a good basic source of reference. But buyers should be aware that it is really aimed at magazine collectors - those who are more interested in getting that rare Scottish-only cover than in how the minutiae of the journal's content week in, week out reflects changes in British broadcasting and social climate.
A fascinating book for anyone with an interest in Radio Times - but leaving room in the market for an in-depth history of one of Britain's best-loved magazines.
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Far more than the story of a publication 13 Feb 2002
By A Customer
The Radio Times has always been far more than merely a TV listings magazine, which makes The Radio Times Story far more than the story of a publication...
The Radio Times Story is beautifully laid-out and illustrated, and the sumptuous pictures alone are entertaining , but Tony Currie writes brilliantly and humorously , making the story equally fascinating. Tony is a TV historian, who has appeared on numerous radio and TV programmes, readily bringing his subject to life without the aid of a script.
The book cannot be a history of the Radio Times without also revealing the evolution of broadcasting in the UK and its impact on the population. It tells how radio was joined by the new medium of television; how monochrome TV became colour, how the BBC responded to the arrival of new radio and TV stations, and how Radio Times responded to competition from upstart publications.
Graphic design students can witness the coming and going of fashions in artwork, layout and typeface. Artists can appreciate an evolution beginning with early art deco-style illustrations which were required to invoke sufficient essence of a radio programme to make the listener want to tune-in. Cartoonists can witness changes in humour; advertisers can find inspiration for selling goods retro-style.
Radio Times front covers clearly achieved their intended impact, as so many of the numerous examples shown prove incredibly memorable. An array of colour plates brings to life covers with a talent for convincing the reader that he is looking at a publication that graced his household weeks ago, rather than years.
This is a book for everyone.
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I never knew there was so much in it... 24 April 2001
By A Customer
This is a fascinating book covering the entire story of the world's first Radio and Television listing magazine throughout its almost eighty year history. What could have been a very dry read is brought to life as the story unfolds as the magazine evolves through many editorial changes and groundbreaking developments in BBC television itself.
The 250 page book features over 500 well-presented illustrations of notable and historic covers - many in colour - including several regional variations and some of the eleven issues which did not appear because of strike-hit absences.
Finely-researched and affectionately written by life-long RT collector Tony Currie, this book well deserves a place on the shelves of collectors of Britain's biggest selling Radio and Television listings magazine or anyone with an interest in the history of British Television itself.
Other listings magazine were of course available but Radio Times has always held a special place within the hearts of BBC viewers (and listeners). A lovingly presented book, and one that cannot be praised highly enough.
If it was on... it's in.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.0 out of 5 stars  1 review
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent but jumps around a lot 25 Sep 2010
By Ted Fleischaker - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Great book and for those of us who adore Radio Times we could not ask for better. That said, we really could ask for a BIT more organization and order as the book seems to jump from thing to thing and in some cases in no particular order. I adore all the cover art and the other schedules so you can REALLY see what the publication looked like in days gone by. A bit more order out fo what sometimes is chaos would makle this 5-stars but as it is, this is a strong 4-star book and one I am thrilled to own!
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