I’ve been quite a fan of Pete Brown’s writing for sometime. A friend recommended that I buy Man Walks Into A Pub, so I did. Before I’d finished that, I ordered Three Sheets To The Wind and halfway through that, I decided to go for the hattrick and order Hops & Glory before it sold out. It has now sold out.
Why do I like Brown’s writing? Easy. It’s funny. It’s informative. It’s chatty. It’s witty. He teaches you stuff about beer’s history, about drinking cultures throughout time and across the world, but it’s hardly ever dry, it’s never too tedious in its detail, but also never skims over things at such a pace that you feel you need to learn more to get at what he’s talking about.
Obviously as a beer writer and lover I’m pretty much the target audience of this book, but I believe that it could be appreciated by anyone who enjoys historic or travel books. I’ve never met Pete (although I have spoken to him over the phone before), but you can’t help but feel from his books that he’d be a great man to have a pint with. I bet everyone who reads his books feels the same way. That’s probably part of what he’s going for.
Oh yeah, in a book review you’re meant to say a bit about what the book’s about, aren’t you? In short, it’s a travel book that sees Pete try to recreate an original IPA, down to the recipe and the journey it takes from Burton to India. It’s also a well-researched history of IPA and the East India Company. It’s also very entertaining, packed with great, well written characters, funny asides. It also makes you want to drink loads of IPAs (hence the recent IPA reviews on this blog, and the pile of bottles in my cellar).
I’d wager at least half the people who read this blog will own and will have read this book. The other half of you should get it too. Although you’ll have to wait till it comes out in paperback in the summer.
Pete Brown‘s blog is here, and very good it is too.