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on 17 October 2010
Mary Miers has made a selection of 62 English Country Houses as featured in Country Life since about 1980, when beautiful colour photographs were used for the first time. The houses are arranged in a loosely chronological order and are predominantly large and grand. However a few houses such as Beckside are of a more modest scale, built by skilled local craftsmen according the popular builders' pattern books of the day. All photographs are of very high quality, as can be expected from Country Life. In addition to the introduction by Mary Miers there are 6 essays by leading historians presented in the form of small booklets at intervals in the book. This book has primarily been made for the American market and can be seen as complementary to the many books of Aurum Press on Country Houses also based on the archives of Country Life, but mainly from the earlier period with mostly high quality black and white photographs. For a modest price you will get a beautiful coffee table book to dream of a rich and romantic life in the English countryside.
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on 27 March 2010
Great book, especially because its not all the most well known houses we see again.
Photos and text just fine, layout too, I would have loved even more houses but its quite a brick already!
The idea about the chapters in a different size maybe a bit akward - but works okay.
I cannot get enough of this subject, so bring them on. And especially the lesser known and smaller houses who might not draw so much attention but are as interesting as the ones we already know so well. Thanks Mary!
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on 9 February 2010
This is one of the very best of the several high quality English country house picture books. And, the photos are very well chosen -- with lots of excellent interior shots especially useful to anyone restoring an historic English country house. This book is a must for those interested in this subject matter. The only criticism I have, and which applies to essentially all of these books, is that coverage focuses on the higher end country houses. Personally, I would prefer greater orientation to the more average country homes.
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on 17 January 2011
A wonderful, high quality volume - clearly very carefully researched (the accompanying images are fantastic) and written in an easy to read, informative style.
Worth every penny!
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on 21 September 2014
A fantastic book. Bought for a 50th birthday gift and haven't been able to put it down myself. Illustrations are just beautiful and book wonderfully presented. Would recommend.
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on 8 November 2015
A great coffee table book full of interesting pictures and a source of ideas
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on 15 January 2015
quick delivery ,book was as expected. made me a happy buyer
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on 7 June 2015
Beautiful, glossy and informative.
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VINE VOICEon 30 October 2009
The stately Homes of England,
How beautiful they stand,
Amidst their tall ancestral trees,
O'er all the pleasant land!

or in Noel Coward's words of parody:

The stately homes of England,
How beautiful they stand,
To prove the upper classes
Have still the upper hand.

Or in Coward revised lyrics for Las Vegas

The stately homes of England,
We proudly represent;
We only keep them up
For Americans to rent....

This is Country Life's archive of beautifully photographed country houses Mary Miers gives an excellent history of the development of the country house, supported by essays from architectural historians such as John Martin Robinson and Tim Knox. 62 houses from seven centuries are covered.

Well, how you want to look at them - the Country Houses are just devine and to dream about. This book is a book to relax on the sofa, cup of tea, biscuit and move into your dream world. If one can not afford the luxury of a country house, well isn' t this the next best. I enjoyed it and I hope you will too.
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on 23 April 2016
Tragic.
An opportunity missed. Had I seen it in a bookshop, I would have looked, but put it back without buying.
Poor interiors detail. Hardly any shots of things that matter today, layout, proportions, kitchens.. DETAIL.!
Ah well.. another time. Perhaps.
WF
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