7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on 6 April 2011
This book is beautiful. No question about it. The print is a delight and the maps are interesting and informative, as well as being works of art in their own right. What lets the book down is that this has been written by multiple authors with some pretty obvious and extreme biases. Some (the named author in particular) have written interesting, informative articles to go with the map in question. Others have written turgid diatribes that are boring and difficult to read. And one has to say, this entire book has a certain political perspective which might best be described as 'left-wing hippy academic', written by ivory tower students. No problem with that in principle, but it can wear a bit thin after a while. For example, there is lots of bemoaning the loss of manufacturing and blue collar workers and overt statements that modern industry is mostly a waste of time, instead of celebrating the birth and evolution of silicon valley (which is not mentioned once). It should be noted by the way, that whilst focussed on San Francisco, this does extend to the whole of Northern California for some topics. All in all, a bit of a curate's egg: good in parts, not in others. When it is good though, it's really good.