Customer Review

40 of 46 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Frustrated, 21 Jun. 2007
This review is from: Watching the English: The Hidden Rules of English Behaviour (Paperback)
It all started well enough. An uncanny and well presented articulation of my own foibles was most amusing - in particular when on the train reading about commuters on trains, I did actually laugh out loud. But after about a third of the way through I started to feel slightly patronised and troubled by repetitive clichés and references to Jeremy Paxman. I felt the book lost its focus; lost the Social Science objectivity and appeared to be a little out of date. For example: clearly proud of her previously published Pub Etiquette book the observations presented did not appear to have moved on or reflect today's world of Wine Bars, Gastro Pubs and Mega Pubs. If I found the train/commute observations amusing it is that this activity, frustratingly, is or should be an out of date activity; one steps back in time every morning and evening - however once outside the confines of an uncomfortable crushed commuter train, a modern world takes over. If there had been more reflection on the changes and what has not changed, over the past 50-60 years; when do we eat: what we call our evening meal when it is not at any of the times suggested and based around commuting/what-time-the-Indian-is-open/when can, when home, when with family!!!!!!!! - I might have finished the book in better frame of mind. I am however left frustrated and disappointed. Perhaps I should have read Jeremy Paxman?
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Tracked by 2 customers

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Showing 1-3 of 3 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 10 Oct 2011 17:15:25 BDT
Yes, I've gone from finding this book fascinating, briefly, to a bit chatty , to a rather boring dinner-party conversation and finally wanted to check when it was written because it seems out of date, repetitive and relying on data that is past its use-by date

In reply to an earlier post on 9 May 2012 12:37:39 BDT
Peasant says:
Still a better book than Paxman though, having read them both.

In reply to an earlier post on 30 Mar 2013 22:03:35 GMT
Entirely agree. In a different class!
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Location: Leicester, Leicestershire United Kingdom

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