Comments for London: The Biography
London: The Biography: 01/27/07
London has about a two thousand year history and has survived numerous fires, plagues, wars, over crowding and so forth. It's no wonder then that Peter Acronym's biography of the city is 801 pages long. While book is heavy enough to make a nice door stop it is written in a way that makes it feel like a light and easy read.
It slowly progresses from earliest history to modern history, though not in a linear timeline as most history books do. Instead it divides the city's biography into themes. There are chapters on the numerous fires, the city's love of the color red, the wall and where it still travels through the city (London continues to grow outwards), a brief history of Cockney and so forth. There are 79 chapters (each chapter being no more than about 10 pages) so it would take too long to list every single theme.
I really enjoyed this book. I like history that is categorized rather than just being a long list of dates and facts. I bought this book over the Christmas holiday based on the 501 book list that N8an posted on his LiveJournal. As I do plan to visit London some day, I plan on keeping this book to reread in greater detail many times.