Sunday, 27 December 2015

'The Naked Guide To Bristol'

Everyone should read a guide book about the city or town in which they live. Don't think you know all there is to know, because there are guaranteed to be lots of amazing secrets and pockets of places that were previously a mystery to you. 

The Naked Guide to Bristol is an excellent example of what a good guide book needs to be, and so it should be since it is written and produced by a team of writers who genuinely do live in the city they are writing about (not like one or two other will-remain-nameless guide book series I have heard talk of...). 

There is no pandering to hipster pretensions, no filibustering or padding... instead what you get in Tangent Books' The Naked Guide to Bristol is a funny, wry and insightful poke around the workings of one of Britain's finest cities. Now in it's fifth edition (published 2015), the book remains bang up to date in terms of stuff like restaurants, pubs and cafes. 

But it is the history and cultural backgrounds to the various areas of Bristol that this book really excels at. Plus recommendations for the best places to grab a fry-up, coffee or pint in each district. In addition, plenty of space is devoted to Bristol's strong history of music and graffiti (although I felt Sarah Records were owed more than a passing picture caption for their eight years of service to the city, but there's hopefully time to address that in the sixth edition of this book). 

Hotels don't really get a look in in The Naked Guide to Bristol, but in an age where everyone books their accommodation via the internet there probably isn't much call for guide books to cover hotels anymore. 

In short, whether you live in Bristol or are planning a visit, The Naked Guide to Bristol is a refreshing and comprehensive, independent take on this fine city. I hope they expand the series to other cities in the South West. 

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