As a historian, I wasn't sure I would like this book. However, it was pretty good and I recommend it. Each beverage is a really useful vehicle to discuss the history of a particular era/culture. Standage did a good job of transitioning from one to another and letting us see the evolution of his concept. I like his vision of the next important "glass" (probably water). The book isn't long, and it is a worthy listen.
I love historical trivia connected to the present day life. This is purely informational, no story lines or characters, like a very interesting chapter in a history book. Caveat: I am a lover of all 6 glasses discussed, so each one i found interesting. I read this book glass by glass, listening to one chapter between other books i was reading. And, with a glass (or 2 or 3) of the highlighted beverage to toast the chapter. Would make a nice gift.
This was a great history lesson based on what the drink of the time was and how it impacted decisions and politics. Dating back to wine in rome to rum in American, tea in England and coffee house decisions. It really was fascinating to listen to, but I love history
Each "glass" was it's own story and equally as memorable
Yes, the making of beer when America was first settled and they wanted more then just water to drink. Also the market for Rum and England trying to control the import of key ingredients and America getting around that rule.
Symposiums and Their Origin
Good book and narrator. I'm not sure if it because I read a lot but I knew a great deal of this already and I read nonfiction to learn new things. Still, it was a pleasurable read.
I enjoyed this book, focused on beverages (coffee, tea, beer, etc.) and world history. A pleasant listen while learning a new thing or two is always fun.
This is the kind of styles I like: good pace, cerebral, well-documented, meaty, mind-bending.
A rather illuminating perspective on modern history, the book builds an interesting theory that the big ages of humanity were coincidental with changes in the most popular drinks. The book is non-committal, however, as to whether the new availability of the drink was a significant factor in the end of an era, or if it is the new era that caused the greater popularity of the new drink. Nevertheless, it makes it very clear that the new era and the new drink did reinforce each other.
Paradoxically, my main reservation on the book is that the general topic is a bit dry. Like a coffee table book, the material is interesting but it is difficult to get interested about short snippets about the drink or its context with few characters or grand historical events. Another missed opportunity is that the book does not really follow-up on old drinks, through the ages, when their main era ends. I wish I would know more about the slow decline of a drink or if that decline is permanent, specially given the importance of beer, wine, etc. in modern America.
Yet, this is a very real treasure trove of historical about just about everyone's favorite drink.
The first 2 parts on beer and wine are very informative and entertaining. The part on coffee and tea have also provided valuable insight on the development of modern industrial society. Very light, enjoyable and thought-provoking.
Very interesting concept, well researched and written.
The detail of the subject matter; it was concise yet thorough.
No, but he certainly reads well and I would be pleased to hear him read again.
I found the history of beer to be particularly engaging, as I had no idea it was one of the earliest beverages ever made.
Highly recommended to any history buffs.
I usually only listen to action fiction, it's pretty much the only thing that keeps my attention. Thought I would take a chance with this book. I was not disappointed.
Hearing how far CocaCola reaches.
Well worth the listen.
I liked how the impact of each drink and it's impact on society was broken down but not overstated. Obviously there were many factors that contributed to the significant events of human history but Tom Standage shows how these beverages truly were a big part of the equation.
I'm being a little picky here but I thought it would have been nice if he took a little pause before reading the section titles within the book. It had to register in my mind that it wasn't the next line of the book but actually a topic/subtopic. It doesn't detract from the book but I just like to know by some kind of change of inflection or a brief pause that this is the beginning of a new section.
While it was a shorter book than I normally listen to, I did take a break after each beverage was discussed. I decided to actually have a class/cup of each of the beverages under discussion. I thought it was fun to drink along with the stories.