I have to say that this book is a bit of a shock. I never knew you could mix so much porn with this degree of authoritative statement. How does one react? I have learned things I will share... yet I have wallowed in the depths of my deepest private imagination. AJT is good. He's like a pusher. He's feeding me what I want in the way that I want it - and not necessarily in a way that suits my best interests. As I was reading this just now I was imagining how we might place the kids - the five kids - and just take off for a week to cross an ocean to hang out, you know, in British pubs.
What else can I say? The book is a collection of, say, six to 14 pubs arranged in "best of" themes. Best of heritage pubs. Best of seaside pubs. 22 or so categories. Reasonable layout and mapping as we saw with the Edinburgh guide. And then those descriptions. These pubs are either simply compelling in their own right or AJT makes them so in the brief entry that accompanies each entry. Consider the entry for The Bell at page 118 in Saffron Walden in Essex, included in the best just off the motorway category. The Elizabethan property includes several acres of walking space. That makes me want to go there - even if I am not on a long highway drive passing by. And what about The King's Head in Laxfield, visited by our pal Paul back in 2007. Paul gave us a great picture in words and photos of the place including the open room in the back where you get the beer instead of anything like a bar. Adrian tells us what it is like to walk through the place looking for the beer room. Gorgeous. And there are so many more descriptions of the sorts of bars you want to sit in, soak in. Be in. There's even Jeff and The Gunmakers there on page 69 (dude!) I miss Stonch. Have I mentioned that?
Summing up? Bought this myself. Not a review copy. It's the Christmas pressie you want. Big time. Buy it.