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4.6 out of 5 stars
337
4.6 out of 5 stars
Format: Paperback|Change
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on 4 February 2017
I was just a bit reticent about downloading this book. I was not familiar with the radio series and my preference has always been for narrative/chronological history - an unfolding story. So I was slightly put off by the idea of a collection of essays surrounding various objects. Again, some reviews seemed to speak of the poor quality of the illustrations in the printed version. No worries! Each essay, though centered on the particular object, broadens out and often its scope covers all history, making points and drawing comparisons and contrasts with various aspects of all civilisation. Really good, really interesting. And as far as the illustrations are concerned, they are sharp HD and are presented well on my Kindle. An excellent book. Thank you.
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on 5 February 2017
Excellent.
I listened to the Radio4 series on player and looked at the pictures as they were described.
This has to be modern classic- puts us, current humanity, into perspective.
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on 25 March 2017
Excellent, very informative and accessible. Found it a great companion on visits to the British Museum, bringing the chosen exhibits to life in terms of detail and context.
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on 2 March 2017
Excellent research on techniques as well as historical background.

An essential book of reference.
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on 11 March 2017
Neil macgregor should never have been allowed to leave the museum or England.
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on 1 June 2017
Very interesting and unusual perspective of world history.
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on 13 March 2017
Better than expected! Delightful!
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VINE VOICEon 26 September 2012
Format: Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
Neil McGregor's original radio series (from which this book derives) must have been a tough pitch: a 100-part documentary series about *objects* that the audience won't be able to see. Doesn't sound that promising! And yet it was a fantastic achievement. But it was crying out for a book. Of course, hardback was the obvious medium for such a treasure trove - but having it in paperback now makes it much more useful for any wanting to make good use of the British Museum itself (for the initial parameter of the concept was that everything had to be in the archives or on display).

Inevitably, the quality of the b/w images for each item is not going to be as high as in the hardback version - but there are still a number of colour plates which do their job well. For better quality images, it is worth checking out the BBC/BritishMuseum website for images and the original programmes (with their great music by Steven Faux).

But the greatest value in having this book is Neil McGregor's prose. It is informative, witty and full of insight. It is a perfect book to dip into in idle moments, or to work systematically through. But however it is read, it is nothing less than a pure joy and delight.
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 24 October 2010
If I had to choose only one medium in which to explore these 100 objects then I'd choose the radio series over this book - all 100 podcasts are still available for free at the time of writing - this may not last. They are superb! Of course we are now in the fortunate position of having access to those and this beautifully produced book as well and it certainly compliments the series. Some criticisms have been raised that the book has pictures of the 100 objects, on the basis that radio listeners preferred to imagine what they look like, but as they have always been available on the BBC website if you cared to look, I think this is a positive addition and they definitely add to the overall experience of this book.

There is no doubt that this is going to be a succesful book and any popularity granted to such an erudite work is to be welcomed but I have to say that some of the writing appears a bit dry and, well the only word I can think of is, worthy. Without the narration of the various experts on the radio series I think the life goes out of some of these stories.

That is a minor quibble though and will prove a matter of taste but otherwise this is still a fine book and destined to become a "classic", especially if the BBC have their way. If you only had one history book to choose this Christmas, I'd go for Map of a Nation: A Biography of the Ordnance Survey but why not splash out and get this one as well, especially at the bargain Amazon price.
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on 20 August 2015
Book exactly as described. Quick delivery. No problems
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