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The Victorian Railway Paperback – 23 Feb 2009

4 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 416 pages
  • Publisher: Thames and Hudson Ltd (23 Feb. 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0500288100
  • ISBN-13: 978-0500288108
  • Product Dimensions: 17.5 x 2.8 x 25.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 166,660 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

Review

'Important ... students of the nineteenth century will be grateful to have it once again available at such a reasonable price'
--Contemporary Review

Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By MarkK TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 21 Jan. 2008
Format: Hardcover
Jack Simmons book is nothing less than an encyclopaedia of Victorian railway history presented as a narrative. Using a thematic rather than chronological format, he addresses practically every aspect of the topic, from the machinery and use of railways to their representation in literature and their management of public relations. Within them he provides a clear overview of the people, places, and technologies that created and directed the development of Britain's railroad network.

The author of over a half-dozen more specialized books on railroad history, Simmons brings an impressive breadth of knowledge to his topic. Much of this is clear from his writing, which with his confident and comfortable tone conveys an easy familiarity with his subject. Yet like an encyclopedia entry his coverage is often brief as he passes from subject to subject, leaving the reader wanting to learn more. This is especially true in terms of his illustrations, which while numerous are nowhere near sufficiently so for his text, leaving readers to track down pictures of the images and places he mentions for themselves.

None of this, however, detracts from the overall utility of this book. Well written and deeply researched, Simmons's book is an excellent guide to understanding Victorian railways and the role they played in the history of their time. Readers will find it an enlightening resource, one that they can enjoy from cover to cover or by selecting the chapters that sate specific needs. Either way, it is one that people interested in the subject will want to keep on their shelves for many years to come.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Cosmology on 5 Sept. 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I feel somewhat hesitant in disagreeing with others who have reviewed and rated this book very highly. Reading the product description I had envisioned something rather different from the book that dropped through my letter box.

I have a long standing interest in all things Victorian and particularly in the railway and have read extensively on the subject. Jack Simmons has been relentless in pursuit of detail, but in my humble opinion often a particular subject can seem completely divorced from its predecessors. This leaves one feeling that this is more a collection of (albeit very interesting) disjointed facts that have been thrown together because they have a common thread (the railway) running through them rather than being a complete work in its own right.

I absolutely agree with other reviewers it contains much fascinating detail but this is spoiled by presentation, but a worthwhile purchase for all that. I award the book three stars only, mainly for effort and some absolute gems of information I have gleaned rather than the enjoyment of reading the book which in the end I was glad to put down.
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Format: Paperback
A scholarly account of many aspects of the railways from 1830 to 1914. Jack Simmons obviously has done his research well, the references need 25 pages of notes.

He is critical of the railways and sets his thoughts in the context of social and literary themes and where he thinks the railways were less than perfect he says so. Often we think poor public relations or bad time-keeping is a modern phenomenon - it was probably worse in the 19th century!

Some interesting arguments and generally quite readable - although some quibbles, howbeit minor. He sees little of railways in literature yet despite a section on Charles Dickens does not mention his short story "The Signalman"; nor the "Railway Children" which was published in 1906.

However a recommended read.
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3 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Scotsalloer on 23 Aug. 2009
Format: Paperback
A fine account by a prominent scholar, clealrly written with auhtority and style on virtually every aspect of railway history imaginable First class travel journey to knowledge and understanding
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 2 reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
An encyclopedic treatment of Victorian railroads 21 Jan. 2008
By MarkK - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
Jack Simmons book is nothing less than an encyclopedia of Victorian railroad history presented as a narrative. Using a thematic rather than chronological format, he addresses practically every aspect of the topic, from the machinery and use of railways to their representation in literature and their management of public relations. Within them he provides a clear overview of the people, places, and technologies that created and directed the development of Britain's railroad network.

The author of over a half-dozen more specialized books on railroad history, Simmons brings an impressive breadth of knowledge to his topic. Much of this is clear from his writing, which with his confident and comfortable tone conveys an easy familiarity with his subject. Yet like an encyclopedia entry his coverage is often brief as he passes from subject to subject, leaving the reader wanting to learn more. This is especially true in terms of his illustrations, which while numerous are nowhere near sufficiently so for his text, leaving readers to track down pictures of the images and places he mentions for themselves.

None of this, however, detracts from the overall utility of this book. Well written and deeply researched, Simmons's book is an excellent guide to understanding Victorian railroads and the role they played in the history of their time. Readers will find it an enlightening resource, one that they can enjoy from cover to cover or by selecting the chapters that sate specific needs. Either way, it is one that people interested in the subject will want to keep on their shelves for many years to come.
Good Information 27 Sept. 2013
By Barbara D. Zambrana - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I received my copy of Victorian Railway , in good time and condition and I got it for a good price. This is a reliable seller - Thank You
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