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35 of 38 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A truly epic journey
Hot on the heels of The Travel Book - an awe-inspiring collection of journeys through every country on earth, comes this similarly wondrous offering from Lonely Planet. As with its global predecessor, The Cities Book is a hefty pictorial hardback that delves into the top 200 cities on earth and, as well as some stunning photography, it doles out helpful pointers on a...
Published on 5 July 2006 by D. Sheridan

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Glossy coffee table book
The Cities book sounded promising, particularly in view of the Lonely Planet guides' reputation. It should have been the perfect book to use to plan which city break holiday you wanted to do next. In a way, it is - you can view information and photographs on lots of cities, done in the same format to enable comparison. In other ways though, that's part of the problem...
Published on 16 Jan 2012 by S. Diment


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35 of 38 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A truly epic journey, 5 July 2006
By 
D. Sheridan (Newcastle, England) - See all my reviews
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Hot on the heels of The Travel Book - an awe-inspiring collection of journeys through every country on earth, comes this similarly wondrous offering from Lonely Planet. As with its global predecessor, The Cities Book is a hefty pictorial hardback that delves into the top 200 cities on earth and, as well as some stunning photography, it doles out helpful pointers on a city's strengths and weaknesses as well as where to eat and what to see. To call this a coffee-table book feels like a slight injustice, but it's incredible attention to detail and the sheer weight of this volume with leave you something close to breathless.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Let down slightly by photographs, 17 May 2007
By 
This is a really readable interesting book - it is not too text heavy! I love sitting in the garden flicking through it deciding which city I'd like to visit next. My only gripe is with the photographs - having visited many of cities in the book I think there are more stunning buildings that could have been photographed (but then I suppose these pictures are found in all guide books!) Certainly by no means comprehensive but will definitely get the wanderlust in you going.
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14 of 17 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Proofreader required, 17 July 2008
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Mark Williams "Mark Williams" (Southampton, England) - See all my reviews
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The Cities Book is a wonderfull brief look at 200 cities around the world. As I go on 5-6 city trips a year I have found it invaluable as a quick quide to where to visit next. But oh dear, there are so many mistakes here. Both descriptions of cities, misnamed photos, innacurate statistics. Did no one ever proof read this book. Please Lonely Planet, send me the next one and I'll do it for free!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Glossy coffee table book, 16 Jan 2012
By 
S. Diment "sue_diment" (Wolverhampton, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Cities Book: A Journey Through the Best Cities in the World (Lonely Planet General Pictorial) (Paperback)
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The Cities book sounded promising, particularly in view of the Lonely Planet guides' reputation. It should have been the perfect book to use to plan which city break holiday you wanted to do next. In a way, it is - you can view information and photographs on lots of cities, done in the same format to enable comparison. In other ways though, that's part of the problem. It felt as though keeping the format the same for each city was more important than making the content relevant for each city. Some of the places I've already visited had entries that didn't mention some of the highlights of going to them, and some of the facts were a bit dubious in places. And as others have mentioned, if it's a tourist guide, do you really need a list of imports and exports? Some of the photographs were excellent, but others were poor. The book overall is perhaps worth borrowing from a library (if you can find it there!) as a guide to where to go next, but I don't think its the kind of must have guide that you need to buy. Once you've made your shortlist of destinations, you'll need to find some better information on each place before you make a final decision! This could have been a great book, but it feels as though someone decided to collect the information they already had catalogued into one book, and then added lots of filler, general statistics and library photographs to make a book, rather than putting together unique research and photographs for each destination.
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4.0 out of 5 stars A fine book, 18 Jan 2010
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Little Cat Voom (The middle of England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Cities Book: A Journey Through the Best Cities in the World (Lonely Planet General Pictorial) (Paperback)
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I`m always likely to be annoyed by textual errors and minor inaccuracies, so I can`t award this book five stars. Easily worth four though! It definitely deserves to be seen as a bit more than a coffee-table book though, as the depth of research and interesting factual information contained definitely supercedes that of a book that just sits there to look pretty and no-one pays much attention to. It`s a really good idea to give some thought to the quirkier cities contained in this big, heavy book if you`re planning some excursions; it`s also good to see LP aren`t just being esoteric and deliberately throwing left-field choices in to show off, and established tourist cities are also given coverage (and rightly so). This is a good read, and if you`re in the right frame of mind, "The Cities Book" will give many hours of reading. If you happen to have a bit of wanderlust in you, you`ll get even more from it than just reading hours!
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8 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Inspiration To Travel, 20 Dec 2006
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This is a good book that I'd recommend. It can give you inspiration to visit a whole range of new places. It's written well enough and provides some useful information, although it shouldn't be your single reference for a destination.

The reason why I didn't give it a 5 is that I bought it based on a recommendation from a camera magazine. I was expecting more photographs from the destinations but there weren't as many as I hoped for. A few less destinations and a few more pictures would have suited me.

Still worth buying though.
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15 of 21 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful, with only one concern, 11 Oct 2006
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This book is great and I would've awarded 5 stars, but for the fact that they list the photo in the Glasgow section as Buchanan Street, when it is not (and Buchanan Street is actually pedestrianised). A small gripe, but when each city has only a few photos to illustrate, they should be accurate.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A beautifully presented overview of the top 200 cities of the world, 4 Jan 2010
By 
Chris Hall "DLS Reviews" (Cardiff, Wales) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Cities Book: A Journey Through the Best Cities in the World (Lonely Planet General Pictorial) (Paperback)
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Length:: 2:07 Mins

'The Cities Book' by Lonely Planet is a lavishly presented coffee table book offering up a very brief overview of what the Lonely Planet's very well travelled researchers pick as their top two-hundred cities of the world. Each one of these cities is given their own ranking with two full glossy pages allocated to each and every one of the cities.

Full colour photographs go alongside the text for each one of the 200 cities in the book. These cities are presented alphabetically, starting with Abuja (in Nigeria) and ultimately concluding with Zanzibar Town (Tanzania).

Each one of these two-hundred listings is subsequently broken down into the same basic categories of information. These are:

- Anatomy (a very brief overview of what physical features make-up the city)
- People (gives details on the people and their culture)
- Typical (a quick insight into the typical characteristics of the city and its people)
- Defining Experience (a recommended experience that hopefully pretty much defines the city)
- Strengths (a list of the city's strengths - often predominant buildings and features)
- Weaknesses (a full and frank list of the city's weakness)
- Gold Star (one particular point about the city that makes it stand out from all of the others)
- Starring Role In... (a list of some of the movies that the city has been filmed within)
- Import (a brief list of some of the city's major imports - not just goods)
- Export (a brief list of some of the city's major exports - again, these are not just goods)
- See (another quick recommendation of what you should see upon visiting the city)
- Eat (a quick recommendation of what you should eat upon visiting the city)
- Drink (a quick recommendation of what you should drink upon visiting the city)
- Do (a quick recommendation of what you should do upon visiting the city)
- Watch (a quick recommendation of what you should watch upon visiting the city)
- Buy (a quick recommendation of what you should buy upon visiting the city)
- After Dark (a quick recommendation of where you should go after dark upon visiting the city)
- Urban Myth (details one of the city's main urban myths, detailing the fact from the fiction in each case).

The listings also give some 'vital statistics' on each city which comprises of - date of birth, address, height, size, population and lonely plant ranking.

All in all, the book is a superb item to have as a coffee table book; ideal for flicking through at your leisure when passing the time or for guests to eye-through if they are left waiting. The listings are brief and uncluttered, with identical layouts on each listings allowing for a great ease of use at the reader's very first glance.

The photographs included within generally offer up a look at a major feature of the city, the type of people you will encounter there and a less-well-known feature of the city. This allows for a reasonably broad overview of the city in which to sum it up with in the best possible way using only 3-4 photographs. Often this means that major features are left out of the photos, but of course, these features should be listed in the text anyway if you decide to put in some further investigation.

Finally, the book includes Tony Wheeler's(Lonely Planet's Co-Founder) top 10 cities, some additional text on the past, present and future of the world's cities and a two page map of the world marking on the various cities (with additional maps of Africa, Europe, Central America and South Asia).

Oh...and if you're interested, the UK cities that made it into the book's top 200 are (with their respective positions):
London - 005
Edinburgh - 021
Dublin - 028
York - 076
Glasgow - 106
Bath - 119
Manchester - 126
Belfast - 163
Cardiff - 171

The book runs for a total of 424 pages, each of high quality, full colour print, presented beautifully for this delightfully insightful book.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Misses the mark, 28 Dec 2009
By 
Dr. Paul Ell (NI, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Cities Book: A Journey Through the Best Cities in the World (Lonely Planet General Pictorial) (Paperback)
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This book seems to be part of a loose series of 'Lonely Planet General Pictorial Guides' including others on Asia, Europe, and the USA. All are oversized coffee-table books printed on high quality paper with a strong emphasis on colour photographs which are often striking.

The Cities Book is no different except that it probably suffers more than other books in the series for generic failings. The selection of cities is eclectic - based on popularity as expressed by Lonely Planet readers. Other guides cover ALL counties in Asia or ALL US States. All cities could not of course be included but there are some strange omissions (and inclusions). Each city only gets a couple of pages devoted to it with the same formulaic information. Often, even with the heavy use of photographs, the pages are full of empty space. The narrative serves only as a very basic introduction to each place and I wonder if that information is even sufficient to decide whether to visit or not. The book is not detailed enough to act as a guide book, and follows too fixed a format to be a travelogue. The actual information provided often takes the form of two or three word bullet points and the formulaic categories could have been better chosen. This volume also seems to contain fewer remarkable photographs. I suspect the largest market with the book will be arm-chair travellers.

Others have noted some errors in the text and attribution of photographs. I can confirm that the book does seem to suffer from sloppy research - not something I found for other Pictorial Guides.

Overall this is a book to browse through a bit like one might Wikipedia moving from city to city although Wikipedia would have more detailed, and possibly accurate, information. As such it doesn't really address a clear market and is of limited value.
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11 of 16 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Very Disappointing, 5 Jan 2008
By 
I completely agree with bibliobiblio's comments the photos were wrong amongst other things, if you are going to write a book you should do proper research so that you are providing the correct facts and information. When people spend there hard earned money they expect to get a good product not an miserable attempt. Do not buy this book.
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