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The Art of Camping: The History and Practice of Sleeping Under the Stars Paperback – 26 Apr 2012

4.6 out of 5 stars 7 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin (26 April 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0241953871
  • ISBN-13: 978-0241953877
  • Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 2.2 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 512,399 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

Does for camping what Roger Deakin did for wild swimming (Independent)

A delightful combination of history and memoir with a generous dollop of guidance thrown on top . . . read this gem of a book

(Economist)

An elegant ode to the joys of camping. All sorts of tips on campsite etiquette, lore, equipment, and best practice, and his advice is convincing and honest. He is a lovely writer and his history is enlivened with tremendous flashes of wit (Daily Telegraph)

Teaming witty anecdotes with a potted history of what sleeping under the stars means sociologically, De Abaitua makes learning how to create a tented home away from home fun (Elle)

De Abaitua will soon have you believing in this consistently engaging and enjoyable book. It's a fine writer indeed who can seem authoritative, approachable and just great fun

(Metro)

About the Author

Matthew De Abaitua is editor-at-large of the Idler and a committed camper. His Twitter feed and popular website, cathandmathcamping.com, provide amusing and useful information on where and how to camp in Britain. He is also the compere of the Free University of Glastonbury and the author of the novel The Red Men, which was shortlisted for the Arthur C. Clarke Award and is currently being made into a film by Shynola. Matthew lives with his wife Cath and young family in Sussex.


Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This was recommended in a magazine andd having just read the awful and over hyped 'The Tent the Bucket and Me' I thought I'd give this a try.

It was a brilliant read, funny - where the other was annoying - and the tales are real and believable. The book gives a dash of history, one of humour and one of advice mixed together it makes a really interesting and enjoyable read.
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Format: Paperback
Most of my family holidays as a child involved camping, and my love of camping has continued through my five decades on the planet. I am well aware not everyone shares my enthusiasm, indeed until relatively recently camping was something of a minority activity. Somewhere in the early 2000s, probably after a financial crash, camping in the UK enjoyed a surge in popularity, getting coverage in newspaper weekend lifestyle magazines and with the publication of books like “Cool Camping”.

I’m pleased to report that The Art of Camping: The History and Practice of Sleeping Under the Stars by Matthew De Abaitua is written by someone who is steeped in camping having also camped as a kid and who never stopped. This book is a winning combination of memoir and history, and I was frequently struck by how many experiences we had shared, for example lugging kit for an entire family from a festival car park to the campsite some considerable distance away, or contemplating driving off a site in the wee small hours.

Matthew De Abaitua has done a wonderfully thorough job of creating an accessible and insightful history of camping, peppered with some great personal anecdotes, and also solid practical advice.

As with many great books that are ostensibly about one thing (camping in this instance), in many ways it is also about everything. Peppered amongst this camping memoir are many a philosophical nugget which touch upon that age old question of what it is to be human.

Even if you don’t like camping I think this book would be worth a read, and if you are already a convert then you should find loads to enjoy here - not least the youth movements spawned in the 1920s and 1930s like the Kindred of the Kibbo Kift, the Woodcraft Folk, and The Order of Woodcraft Chivalry.

An interesting, witty, helpful, well written, passionate book, and an unexpected gem. Well worth reading.

4/5
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Format: Paperback
Funny, thoughtful, entertaining and inspiring. The book intertwines personal accounts and thoughts with a history of camping. We meet plenty of fascinating, some left-field, characters along the way. It's a great book for all of us who've ever thought that they maybe more to life than staring at a screen. I'm off to get my tent and start up my own camp-fire.
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Format: Paperback
This book attracted my attention having done quite a lot of wild camping myself: having run a little wild and being that sort of person... Without sounding like a weirdo and which I certainly am not, I think that:-

1 This book is probably not what you think it will be
2 It is rich book and I found it best in small doses
3 Reading it was mind-altering for me
4 The reviews on the cover are right
5 I found just a few of Matthew's ideas were not one's I agreed with, but that didn't spoil the book for me
6 How could anyone write such a high quality book about a seemingly bland subject?
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