Top critical review
7 people found this helpful
Basically a health and safety manual
on 24 December 2012
I have to admit i was very disappointed with this book. I loved the original SAS survival handbook and i cant shake the feeling that Mr Wiseman was approached to write this 2nd novel to ride on the coat tails of its success. As ex SAS, the first book was totally within the authors scope, but this urban version reads too much like the sort of general health and safety instructions we are bombarded with in everyday life. Chapters include some good self defence instructions and details for ways to secure your home which i liked, but an awful lot of stuff along the lines of precautions and good practice when using power tools, how to be safe at work from the "hazards", for example the glues used by illustrators/graphic designers. Theres even quite a bit about posture and orientation of computer monitors etc to avoid strain. Even hairdressers get a special mention for their jobs requiring them to stand on their feet all day. All very sensible stuff, its well written, clear and concise, but hardly the life and death stuff youd expect in the book which is the sequel to the brilliant original survival handbook.
Thats my grief with this book. I cant criticise it in any way for its layout, illustration, clarity or writing. Its just the subject matter is so mundane and so ordinary, a lot of the hazards which this book tells us how to avoid are the things we usually use our common sense to avoid. Its all quite patronising in a way. Wherein the 1st book was written for the aspiring crocodile Dundee, this book is for the aspiring 21st century man. Very cautious and "sensible", who can check a hire car for tyre pressure and whether its doors open and close properly (page200), and can recognise the signs of an eating disorder (page 292) and he can organise his workspace to avoid repetitive strain. Be warned, if youre thinking of buying this book because you loved the first like i did, just know that they're two very different books when it comes to subject matter.