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London: A Life in Maps
London: A Life in Maps
by Peter Whitfield
Edition: Paperback
Price: £15.95

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Story Well Told, 6 Feb. 2012
This review is from: London: A Life in Maps (Paperback)
This may not be the definitive story of our capital told in terms of maps but it is a creditable effort nonetheless.
Whilst it does not adhere to a strictly chronological format, the reader still feels a sense of living through the growing pains and evolution of a small town, then absorbing a collection of surrounding hamlets and villages to become one of the major cities of the world.
It is an ideal book for dipping into as most of the "chapters" consist of a single page of text accompanied by a map and/or illustrations - sometimes focussing on a single community, sometimes encompassing an era or a particular industry.
I echo the thoughts of another reviewer who complains that there are too many maps which are, in effect, not fit for purpose as the content is too miniscule to be of any practical use, which a shame as so much detail is lost. In the same vein, there are two many which fall into the crease between the two pages - sometimes with just an inch appearing on the facing page.
Better, surely, to make the map bigger and split the plates leaving a clear gap, but at least showing the whole content.
That said, this book was a most enjoyable read, full of both detail and atmosphere and springing a few surprises along the way. I have a feeling I shall read it again some time - and will enjoy it all over again.

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