I love drinking all these things! I loved the concept and perspective in this book. I never considered the influence beverages had on social development and commerce. I thoroughly enjoyed this.
Overall the book provided an enjoyable listen and I don't regret picking it up. However if you are interested in the social aspect of how people lived in the past you might not learn anything new. The book provides more of a broad-ish overview than a in depth guide. It told me about things I was mostly already aware of (particularly in the first half of the book) however it is nice to hear them in a different context and with slightly different point of view. I will be buying this book for my bookshelf. I didn't however enjoy the narrator. His reading was quiet flat and it didn't seem that he was interested in the topic.
Would recommend to a friend.
An enjoyable in depth study of beverages which are ever-present and in some ways indispensable to us in our day to day lives. The author allows us to see the connections between these familiar drinks to human history and pre-history in a remarkably entertaining and enlightening way. Many of the details of coffee and tea's early days in western civilization are truly fascinating, as are the details of the carbonated drinks of the late 19th and early 20th century America. The narrator's voice is authoritative but pleasant and keeps our interest.
A most enjoyable and informative read. I never knew how intertwined all these drinks were with our social, political and economic life. The title is most apt and covers each drink in great detail. I am much the wiser for reading this book.
It explains the historical background of each of the different drink segments extremely well.
This is one of those books that falls outside of my unworldly personality requirements. To begin with, the story line, along with the narration, just couldn't capture my attention - The content seemed a bit thin and far reaching at the same time. And then, when the author decided to remind the reader of the millions of years of evolution and mankind's split from apes, (with no mention of the apes contribution to alcohol mind you) my brain ground to a halt. Many other people, however, enjoyed this book - so, please, take what I'm saying with the grain.
I made it through the first CD and then gave up. There really wasn't enough information for a book - it should have been a long magazine article (like in Smithsonian). The author kept repeating things as if there were a minimum number of words needed on each topic.
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