Top critical review
Misleading title and synopsis
10 August 2016
This is the story of an author doing research for a book which will look at the way in which architecture and city planning influence crime and law enforcement in a locale. To write his book he gathers the details on some burglars and burglaries and does that journalistic thing of interviewing some experts on subjects relating to his subject matter. He keeps a fairly fulsome set of notes of these interviews including thumbnail sketches of the interviewees and other impressions on meeting his selected experts. Somehow this research for a book does not seem to have turned up enough material for the book he (perhaps) intended to write. Whilst he does have some real nuggets on the influence of architecture on crime they could probably be summarised in a couple of pages. Lacking material, the author has written about the process of gathering material.
I would really love to read a proper "Burglar's Guide to the City" which "offers a kind of criminal X-ray of our built environment". That sounds really interesting. I resent receiving this book instead.
In the interests of fairness and balance, let me add that the book is reasonably well-written and if I had been looking for a book about a journalist gathering material for a book called the 'Burglar's Guide to the City' I might have been happy enough to read this one.
The title and synopsis are highly misleading. One star.