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Russ Varley "russvarley" (Scarborough, United Kingdom)
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CASEBOOK OF BRYANT & MAY HC
CASEBOOK OF BRYANT & MAY HC
by Christopher Fowler
Edition: Hardcover

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Bryant and May. In colour. But not in your head!, 20 Mar. 2013
The Casebook of Bryant and May is a collection of two B & M stories (The Soho Devil and The Severed Claw) that have been wonderfully rendered in graphic novel/comic form by Keith Page. There are also collections of other B & M ephemera such as Arthur's bookshelf ("Cormorant Sexing for Beginners" anyone?) illustrated panels featuring a scene from the other books and "mug sketches" of the principle characters along with a bio.

The stories are classic B & M with great plots leading to a satisfying ending, all scattered liberally with Christopher Fowler's trademark London trivia. The stories are great but they aren't the best bit. The most remarkable thing about the Casebook is that there is absolutely no "character shock". Character shock is that uneasy feeling you get when a character you have been imagining for years is suddenly shown to you as a photo/picture. I'm not sure if this is because Fowler has rendered these people so strongly over the years that Page's drawing could only be as they are, or if the drawings are done in such a way that my own imagining sits easily over the top. Whatever magic it is the illustrations are wonderful with many scenes having the feeling of an Ealing comedy or a Tony Hancock sketch.

The Casebook of Bryant and May is a must for ALL B & M fans.


Wild Flowers of Britain and Ireland: A New Guide to Our Wild Flowers
Wild Flowers of Britain and Ireland: A New Guide to Our Wild Flowers
by Marjorie Blamey
Edition: Paperback

40 of 41 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An excellent flower book, 19 July 2004
The first thing to say about this book is that contrary to what the previous reviewer said, this book does have keys. The whole book is a key. For example, all the bright yellow dandelion-like flowers are grouped together over about 3 pages; all the pea family is grouped together with the addition of a sub-key to narrow down the search (EG single flowers, group of flowers in tight heads etc.). The key that it is missing is a vegetative key for plants not in flower. However this is balanced by the inclusion of sections for common trees, ferns, grasses (inc sedges and rushes), clubmosses and aquatic plants.
All of these sections are illustrated brilliantly by Blamey. For example the grass section with its easy to follow key and all the grass flowers laid out in painstaking detail has made grass ID a far more pleasurable experience than it ever was using Hubbard. And for those people who think that illustrations are second best to a photograph think again. They make the illustrations in books like the Wildflower Key (Rose) look flat and lifeless and yet contain not of the distracting background that characterises many photographs. They manage to capture the vitality of each plant without obscuring detail.
Having used this book in the field several times I find that I always use this book when I know which family a particular flower belongs to. For those plants that I am unfamiliar with or that are not in flower I use the keys in Rose and then look the answer up in this book.
All in all this is a fantastic book for anyone who is not an absolute beginner (if really helps if you can recognise the plant families) and the only reason it does not get 5 stars is the lack of a vegetative key. If they were to revise it and include one then it would be perfect and I would certainly buy another.


The New Reading The Landscape: Fieldwork in Landscape History (Landscape Studies)
The New Reading The Landscape: Fieldwork in Landscape History (Landscape Studies)
by Richard Muir
Edition: Paperback
Price: £20.00

21 of 32 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Field Guide, 18 Mar. 2004
A first rate book from Muir. Informative, easy to read and packed with useful information. Ideal for both people studying the field and those who are just curious about why the landscape looks the way it does.


The Culm Valley Light Railway: Hemyock Branch of the Great Western Railway
The Culm Valley Light Railway: Hemyock Branch of the Great Western Railway
by Michael J. Messenger
Edition: Hardcover

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Essential reference of this pioneering line., 12 Jun. 2002
This book is a wothwhile addition to the bookshelves of any railway fan. This line is covered from the its original inception through to closure 100 years later. Each station is described fully, with many accompanying photographs (with many from earlier periods in the lines life). It also includes details of local firms who used the railway and many other small details that really give a "feel" of what the line was like. These include freight and passenger receipts for many years and a list of all the original shareholders in the independent company.
It is well illustrated through out, with only a small handful of the photos being "the usual suspects" and the author's style is very readable and easy to follow. All in all, an excellent book for any railfan.


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