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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Entertaining and full of information!
I bought the book without much thought into what it was going to be about or who had written it and I was wonderfully surprised. Firstly it offers lots of interesting historical and current information on the state of roaming freely in the UK, how the Right to Roam act came into place and the battles that have been fought to secure it. More interesting than that, it is an...
Published on 4 Jun 2011 by Watters

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22 of 28 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Potentially good - spoiled by the sneering
I really wanted to like this book. I really expected to enjoy it. I enjoyed his previous book, "Map Addict". When I found out it was on sale I bought it straight away. I had it with me as holiday reading, while walking a long distance foot path and then staying in the Lakes. There is some really interesting stuff in here: a chapter about the struggle for access rights...
Published on 4 Jun 2011 by P. G. Harris


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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Entertaining and full of information!, 4 Jun 2011
This review is from: The Wild Rover (Hardcover)
I bought the book without much thought into what it was going to be about or who had written it and I was wonderfully surprised. Firstly it offers lots of interesting historical and current information on the state of roaming freely in the UK, how the Right to Roam act came into place and the battles that have been fought to secure it. More interesting than that, it is an account of one man and his link to walking and how he finds it, the best word to describe the book is 'personal' - it is written in a unique and opinionated style while not causing you to feel like you are reading a propaganda manual. Thoroughly enjoyable and well worth a read for anyone interested in the slightest in what might lie beyond their back garden.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wild about the wild rover, 9 April 2011
This review is from: The Wild Rover (Hardcover)
Having enjoyed map addict so much I couldn't wait for this one to come out and it didn't disappoint. Lots of fascinating facts written in a humorus and absorbing way. Right I'm off for a walk now.
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22 of 28 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Potentially good - spoiled by the sneering, 4 Jun 2011
By 
P. G. Harris - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Wild Rover (Hardcover)
I really wanted to like this book. I really expected to enjoy it. I enjoyed his previous book, "Map Addict". When I found out it was on sale I bought it straight away. I had it with me as holiday reading, while walking a long distance foot path and then staying in the Lakes. There is some really interesting stuff in here: a chapter about the struggle for access rights in the north, which goes beyond the usual account of the Kinder trespass, to other acts of civil disobedience, a chapter on battling super-rich southern landlords, an account of Parker's own walking of a long distance path, the Ridgeway, a discussion of the merits of coastal and river walking, a fascinating chapter about walking old ways with religious connections.

However, about a third of the way through, I found that I wasn't enjoying it as much as I was expecting and quickly realised that Parker spends much of the time sneering. Sneering at his fellow walkers, sneering at people who plan their walks, sneering at people who work 9 to 5 and live on new build estates, sneering at coastal walking as against walking by grubby canals and rivers.

Now that would not necessarily be a bad thing were his sneering to be witty and original. It isn't. He picks out lame old targets and attacks them with the blunt and rusty implement of stereotyping. He has a go at health and safety legislation. He bravely portrays schoolboys who like science and maths as wearing bottle bottom glasses. In talking about people living in a new village he creatively talks about "...most of the decisions to move to Mawsley were taken by whippet thin wives, which their considerably heftier husbands went along with for an easier life". The worst bit of stereotyping comes early on, when having written interestingly about the fight for footpaths in the northwest, he attempts to write phonetic northern speech, and describes Edale and Castleton in a fashion which would be dismissed as unoriginal in a 10 year old's hands. It's not just that this is nasty writing, it is lazy writing.

All in all Parker seems intent on portraying himself as a trendy media leftie, who while claiming still to cling to radicalism has become a reactionary conservative (with a small "c") misanthrope. If anybody decided to launch a left wing answer to the Daily Mail, Mike Parker would be a shoe in as editor in chief.

I started this book wanting to be able to recommend it, but sadly I can't.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Interesting, funny, and a great advocate for everyday walking (get off your computer), 9 Aug 2012
This review is from: The Wild Rover (Hardcover)
I saw Mike speak at an event in Wiltshire, bought his book mainly out of politeness, but back at home found that I couldn't put it down. A great blend of passion for the subject, funny annecdotes, and with a deprecating sense of humour. A very open and honest writer. As a member of my local ramblers group for many years, the stories about ramblers were often spot on and made me laugh a lot. I love the fact that Mike has made an interesting book from something so mundane - our local network of paths, plus the history behind them - much of which I didn't know, despite working in the sector - and some great walking tales. I love the descriptions of his experiences in Blacks, buying kit, and freaking out on the CtC path after a night in a bivvy sack. Quality.

Ho hum, after buying this book get off the computer and get yr boots on.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Mike Parker at his best !, 21 Feb 2014
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This review is from: The Wild Rover (Hardcover)
Mike Parker has a different take on many things and his approach is refreshing, again, no dreary guide-book stuff here
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5.0 out of 5 stars Memories, 14 July 2013
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This review is from: The Wild Rover (Paperback)
I enjoyed every minute of this book. I have read another book by Mike Parker who seems very much on my wavelength and with the same interests - but not in every way.
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2.0 out of 5 stars A Bit Of A Disappointment, 18 May 2013
By 
C. SMITH (Wiltshire) - See all my reviews
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This book didn't really do it for me. I was hoping for something more in keeping with the description, or Parker's other book "Map Addict". Instead I thought the author came across as really rather full of himself.

Whole sections of the first part of the book seem to be devoted to rewriting history so that the British footpath network becomes some sort of socialist success-story. One of the things I have always loved about walkers is how we are drawn from all sections of society, but to listen to Parker we are all secret Marxist-Leninists struggling against Tory landowners at every turn. This has not been my experience.

Then to add insult to injury, he displays the most appalling snobbery about towns like Swindon - worse than you would hear in any Conservative Club in the land. I wish I had never bought this book. The only thing I am giving any stars for is the few humorous jokes in the first chapters.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good read., 12 Feb 2013
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Mike Parker is always good at what he does and this is no exception. Highly recommended - and what I liked particularly is that for onec it is a book that doesn't look down on us Welsh!
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A good companion, 19 Jun 2012
By 
E. S. Funnell - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Wild Rover (Paperback)
Amazon brought this to my attention after I'd purchased my Harvey maps for the Wainright Coast to Coast walk, and it seemed like appropriate reading to have with me on the trip. I'd not come across the author before, but I'm now awaiting a second book by Mike Parker, as I found 'The Wild Rover' well researched, good at challenging my own views on footpaths, walking etc - and hugely (at times 'laugh out loud') entertaining. Highly recommended.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Not read yet, 6 Dec 2013
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A. Grimaldi (wales) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Wild Rover (Paperback)
I haven't read it yet, but I'm sure it will be great. I have read 'Map addict" and 'Neighbours from Hell' by Mike Parker and they are very funny and informative all at the same time!!!
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The Wild Rover
The Wild Rover by Mike Parker (Paperback - 29 Mar 2012)
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