Some texts really change the way one thinks - this book had this effect on me. I don't judge this as a historian, but as a social scientist. The chapters on clothing, reading, travel and theatre are particularly effective because they give a view of human cultural experience which seems to differ little from that in the contemporary world: young men wore waistcoats decorated with death heads; they went to battle re-constractions, and wanted gripping novels to read on train journeys. It covers more than Victorian Britain, and touches on the shopping experience and the rise of the cash economy, it gives colour and life to social history, and there is nothing new in 3-D movies - they had train crashes on stage before the cinema. Not a quick read, but a text which really brings the past to life.