The Empire of Things Paperback – 16 Nov 2013
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Top Customer Reviews
I like the last part best; from when he gets involved in the `Amanae' treatment - an extraordinary thing to do considering that "I've had extensive dealings with a variety of alternative remedies in the past ... in fact, you name me some practice, and I'll see if I haven't engaged with it yet," but "I can't say that I've ever been cured of anything." This one, however, has somehow hit the spot for him.
And then he goes travelling off round the world, becoming particularly taken up with watching wild bears in the deepest forests of Transylvania, before coming back home skint and spending a lot of time - which he hadn't done for forty years or so - with his Mum and Dad. It's not clear whether all this really happened in that order, probably not, but it all fits together well and finally brings the book to a meaningful close.
Other parts of the book are horrible; not badly written, not at all, but the subject matter is sometimes grim. Do we really need to be unexpectedly presented with graphic details of what happened to Vlad the Impaler's victims? I would advise anyone with a particularly sensitive nature to just skip this section entirely.
There are other horror stories too; details of modern political conflicts, but at least there is some point to these - we probably do need to know.Read more ›
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
I have a short attention span, so the nice thing is that this book allows for that. It's a collection all kinds of things, some of his earlier writing. It's a lovely, heartfelt collection of personal stories, and social commentary, mixed in with some good and well-researched, sensible political standpoints.
He has such a keen mind for human observation, and pointing out the obvious that I sometimes miss about a situation. I love how he thinks. His compassion and humour is there on every page.
This book will make you laugh, and cry, and hopefully laugh more, but it won't leave you unmoved, or without more questions about life.
He covers everything from Stonehenge and it's builders and their culture, to his own neighbours, rock festivals, and a whole lot more in between. I can't really say what it's a book about, it's about a lot of things. But I can totally recommend that you buy it and read it.