79 of 84 people found the following review helpful
A book that opens all sorts of possibilities,
This review is from: The Making of the British Landscape: How We Have Transformed the Land, from Prehistory to Today (Hardcover)Doctor Pryor is probably best known for his books on archaeology and his latest one attempts to bring a lot of such knowedge up to date. Indeed this is an admitted "update" on Hoskins' classic "Making of the English Landscape" and so includes much information on Wales and Scotland. Having said that though the vast bulk of the examples used are still English, perhaps because that is where the best examples of man's effect on the landscape exist.
As I say the book is bang up to date including discourses on such disparate subjects as modern planning law, erosion and climate change, all of which obviously have a bearing on where the landscape is changing now and likely to in the future.
All in all if you are at all interested in how the British landscape got to be how it is and how it may change this is a book you will enjoy. It is an "easy" read, which is a compliment as the author's obvious knowledge is worn lightly. There are loads of illustrations and maps, some of which might have benefitted from being larger and more detailed it has to be said, but one of the encouragements is to look at the OS maps of whichever area you are interested in and use this book as a guide to how the map looks as it does. This last point is important as the author makes no claims that this is a definitive guide and indeed offers two pages of more detailed "books to take in the car", but as a primer on the subject this book takes some beating.
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Initial post: 4 Oct 2011 23:09:34 BDT
Last edited by the author on 4 Oct 2011 23:15:13 BDT
Gary Longden says:
An impressive work of record, but I did not think it was an easy read. Too much time was spent on some sites of limited interest (hillforts) too little time was spent explaining how epochal changes (Bronze/ Iron age) physically contributed to landscape alteration.Frequent repitition becomes tiresome, and there are a few factual howlers (The stadium of light is in Sunderland NOT Middlesbrough!). The black and white illustrations were often too small and lacked the detail claimed by the author.
As a text/reference book it is fine. As a history it is patchy, as a work of literature it is poor.In short it lacks discipline and love.
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