Category Archives: Books

Books and writing about pubs.

Book Reviews: The Search for the Perfect Pub

The Search for the Perfect Pub by Paul Moody and Robin Turner
Figure 87. The Search for the Perfect Pub by Paul Moody and Robin Turner.

If there’s one point upon which I can immediately ease the potential reader’s mind about The Search for the Perfect Pub: Looking for The Moon Under Water, it’s that the authors Robin Turner and Paul Moody are not in search of a Wetherspoon’s. They do of course find some; whether or not you happen to believe that JD Wetherspoon’s deserve a place in any search for the ‘perfect pub’, Tim Martin’s ubiquitous chain (about whom I do still mean to do a post at some point) has at least tossed its hat in the ring for this particular competition. And while it may not in the end be their ideal, they do give Wetherspoon’s a fairly even-handed treatment. No, it’s the faceless corporatised chains that most draw their ire as, taking Orwell’s 1946 panegyric to his favourite pub The Moon Under Water as their starting point, they survey the state of the British pub at the start of the 21st century.

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Book Reviews: The Local

London Pubology, you may have noticed, has hardly been awash with content recently, not that I’ve ever managed more than a post every few months, but particularly in recent years. This is due to nothing more than my own inability to commit fingers to the keyboard (or whatever the modern equivalent of “pen to paper” might be). Fortunately, many others continue to write eloquently, both on blogs (I particularly commend Boak and Bailey), and in books (a recent favourite has been Adrian Tierney-Jones’s CAMRA’s Great British Pubs).

I had been thinking for some time that I might want to talk about beer books on here (specifically, those with a focus on London), but was unsure what to kick off with. I clearly missed the seasonal present shopping deadline for raving about Tierney-Jones’s book, though I still intend to get round to it, and maybe if you need present ideas for Mother’s Day you could go worse than either it or the book I’m about to mention.

The Local by Maurice Gorham and Edward Ardizzone
Figure 83. The Local by Maurice Gorham and Edward Ardizzone.

So it was the other week that I found myself browsing at the excellent Big Green Bookshop in Wood Green, and came across a beautiful reissue of The Local by Maurice Gorham with illustrations by Edward Ardizzone. Both the book itself and its subject immediately appealed to me, and I am confident that they will appeal to the London Pubology reader as well.

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