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Adventure on the High Teas: In Search of Middle England (original 2009; edition 2009)

by Stuart Maconie

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128None93,413 (3.79)18
Member:gaskella
Title:Adventure on the High Teas: In Search of Middle England
Authors:Stuart Maconie
Info:Ebury Press (2009), Paperback, 352 pages
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Adventures on the High Teas: In Search of Middle England by Stuart Maconie (2009)

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http://nwhyte.livejournal.com/2015505.html

Another delightful look at part of England by the author of Pies and Prejudice, this time looking at southern England as a partial outsider. Though he spends a lot of time on the usual quirks of local populace and history, his most powerful chapters are on great English literature and also humour. Strongly recommended for anyone with an interest in England. ( )
  nwhyte | Nov 1, 2012 |
In short,a tour of Middle England by a throughly nice bloke. It is an amusing and at the same time informative tour through the central area of England,which takes in places as diverse as Bath to Grantham and Oxford to Leamington Spa. On the way Stuart Maconie talks about Motorway Service Stations,English ghost stories,food and music. He also meets and talks with the people who live in the Towns and villages covered by his book.Albeit a very personal journey,I found myself nodding in agreement with many of his very sensible comments. ( )
  devenish | Jul 21, 2011 |
Stuart Maconie is back on the road, now venturing further from the safety of his northern birthplace (which he explored in Pies and Prejudice) to investigate the myths of Middle England, home of Jane Austen, Nick Drake, David Brent, Margaret Thatcher, Fred West, Midsomer Murders, Brief Encounter and Tubular Bells. It's an easy life being a celebrity travel book writer: you get on a train, spend a day wandering round Chipping Norton or Burton-On-Trent, sample the local wares, chat to a few disgruntled passers by, make a few notes, nick a few bits from other people's books or blogs, then cobble it all together with wry humour and a little seasoning - voilà, £11-99 in Waterstones. I might resent it if Maconie wasn't a writer first and celeb second, if he hadn't worked his way up through the NME trenches, if he wasn't so warm and avuncular, at times even bordering on fascinating.

Read the full review at my blog ( )
  rolhirst | May 10, 2011 |
Maconie is a London music writer and t.v. host from Middle England, what seems to be the equivalent of the Midwest in America. On the surface, this book has him traveling to small towns and villages that tend to be overlooked in favor of places like London or Birmingham. It appears to be essays that are sometimes funny, other times, like discussing musician Nick Drake, sad. But there's a lot more here: Maconie breaks it up into chapters that concentrate on food, music, literature or the British railway, and all along he goes into interesting biographies of the famous or infamous, such as when visiting the little hometown of Thatcher.

I'm so used to reading British slang that I usually have no problem, but perhaps because Maconie is from the north, he sometimes uses phrases or whole sentences that stop me. Still, that's a small complaint. This isn't so much a guide book as a book that proves that history is everywhere in England. ( )
1 vote mstrust | Jan 12, 2011 |
Not too much depth, but a pleasant read. Maconie writes well, and is an amiable and knowledgeable companion on a bummel around diverse places and aspects of 'Middle England'. It's a bit hard to define exactly what that does or doesn't include, but why bother? that might spoil the fun of this eclectic and open-minded approach. ( )
  eglinton | Sep 23, 2010 |
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Epigraph
'The land of embarrassment and breakfast.' - Julian Barnes
Dedication
For The English Roses
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Imagine that you are a very particular kind of Englishman or woman.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0091926505, Paperback)

Just where and what is “Middle England?” Is Slough really as bad as Ricky Gervais makes out? From Shakespeare to Midsomer Murders, Stuart Maconie goes in search of the truth, with plenty of stop-offs for tea and pastries.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:35:58 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

Everyone talks about Middle England. Sometimes they mean something bad & sometimes they mean something good. But just where & what is Middle England? Stuart Maconie didn't know either, so he packed his Thermos & sandwiches and set off to find out.

(summary from another edition)

» see all 3 descriptions

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