The latest book about Wales to land on my desk is this very fine production by Daniel Start and Tania Pascoe, called "Wales, Hidden Places, Great Adventures and the Good Life".
Hmm...it seems I will have to find another collection of secret places to visit and keep to myself. Luckily Daniel hasn't covered them all- I still have a few up my sleeve!
If visitors to Wales want to do a bit of exploring, some wild swimming, eat in a carefully selected local restaurant and stay somewhere special as well, the book tells them how to find these places. I guess that does add up to the "Good Life" of the title. There are a great many unusual and out-of-the-way places listed, worlds away from the usual tourist honey-pots.
The chapters are well ordered, the prose reads well, (if a little caffienated) the layout and graphics are very well thought out and the places selected are, on the whole, wisely chosen. I can't fault the production or editorial values of this book, and I am pleased it features my photo of the Diffwys floor 6 mill. I'm cautiously optimistic.
I guess anyone prepared to spend almost £17 on a very attractive book like this is going to have some investment. If they read it, they will be informed about where they are going- lets hope that spills over into respect for the Welsh landscape, and for the people and animals who live here as well. Perhaps this book is a step in the right direction.
Wild Guide: Wales and the Marches