Ackroyd portrays London from the time of the druids to the beginning of the twenty-first century, noting magnificence in both epochs, but this is not a simple chronological record. It is a comprehensive account, animated by Ackroyd's concern for the close relationship between the present and the past as well as by what he describes as the peculiar "echoic" quality of London whereby its texture and history actively affect the lives and personalities of its citizens. London
is perhaps the most important study of the city ever written, and confirms Ackroyd's status as what one critic has called "our age's greatest London imagination". Street Life and the People
vividly describes the everyday activities and concerns of Londoners. Particular areas of interest include customs, food, drink, entertainment, sex, crime, and punishment.
©2000 Peter Ackroyd; (P)2004 Random House Audiobooks