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on 15 January 2017
i was really enjoying this book but when i got to the bottom of page 312, the next page was a previously written chapter !!! on my search for the elusive page 313 it could not be found and went straight to page 345! i know this is a printing error but it is really frustrating when you are enjoying reading it
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on 14 December 2013
Bought this for kindle a while ago and throuroughly facsinating read.To be re read and dipped into for some time- Well written,engaging - have since bought 2 more copies in book form for Christmas and Birthday gifts . Not only for Dickens fans. This is just hugely informative and absorbing story about the development of London and is terrific! Well worth the purchase.
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on 2 November 2016
type is really small...i havent been able to read it..even with glasses.
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on 12 October 2014
This is a brilliantly written book which gives such a good description of London in Dickens time, that you can actually visualise
the scenes described very easily.
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on 8 January 2015
A fantastic and fascinating book on life in Victorian London. Flanders covers the minutiae of living in the metropolis with skill. I cannot recommend it highly enough.

I am not really a fan of Dickens' work, but I thought the author struck the balance between an informative history and referencing characters and scenes from Dickens' writing well.

Take time to read the footnotes also; they are really interesting and given they take up a large proportion of the book, should be paid attention to.

My only gripe would be the obvious lack of effort the publisher put into converting the book into an ebook, with page references left in throughout. This is fairly useless on Kindle and made referring back to former comments a pain.
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on 5 December 2013
As an avid London lover - daughter lives 40 mins commute away and we are there often - I loved being able to pin point places that I know and am now able to go back to London and look for places that were and see what is in their place.
Loved how the history of the city came alive with the comparisons between the Dickens books and the real place.
A little puffed up in places but for London lovers and history people I'd recommend this as a read
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on 8 November 2012
This book, by choosing as its primary viewpoint Charles Dickens' display of his intimate knowledge of Victorian London gives a well-coloured close-up of its subject, drawing the reader ingto all the capital's vibrant, noisy, smelly life. Above all, London was bursting with energy, and this is beautifully conveyed. My only criticism is that for my elderly eyes the print, especially of the footnotes, is rather small
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on 9 September 2013
Fascinating exhaustively researched look at life in London in the 1800s. If you don't know London well would be useful to have a map of modern London nearby to refer to. Some of the lists tend to be a bit long but the book is full of quotes from diaries and books (especially Dickens). The Kindle edition has links in the text to the sources but not the pictures and quite a few places refer to page numbers but are not linked.
One item I found interesting in the section on eating etc: waiters had to pay the owner to work there and supply cloths cutlery etc and relied on a tip of one penny a diner for their income!
Overall, fascinating, well written book.
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on 13 October 2014
This book got off to a dodgy start when the author told us that Dickens "was born in the reign of George II although by 1836 the old King was.......mad". But a few lines later she tells us (correctly) that in 1820 the Prince Regent inherited the throne as George IV. Later in the book she again muddles (twice) George II and George III.

Having said that, once you get into it, the book is detailed and informative. The author has obviously done a good deal of research and knows her Dickens. In many ways Victorian London seems to resemble the India I visited in 1978. The phrase, "the past is another country" comes to mind frequently. For example, I don't suppose that many Londoners eat eel or whelks now, and certainly oysters are no longer associated with poverty.

My criticism of the book is that if anything it goes into too much detail (the chapter on prostitutes is an example). That made me turn pages fairly quickly. This is a pity because the subject matter is very interesting.
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on 17 April 2013
Fantastic book covering all aspects of life in the Victorian era with direct links to dickens charicters .
The sights,smells & sounds are all captured here. After reading this I have started reading Oliver Twist
Again & it's like reading it for the first time.....only better .
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