By Craig Taylor
ECCO, $29.99, 412 pages

London has long been held considered a premiere city of the world.  Authors and poets have tried to capture its essence with varying degrees of success and now writer Craig Taylor presents the most recent attempt to capture what makes London special in his book, the aptly titled, Londoners: The Days and Nights of London Now – As Told By Those Who Love It, Hate It, Live It, Left It, and Long For It.  In this, Taylor puts together a collection of interviews he conducted with residents of London over a period of 5 years. He interviews people from all walks of life:  bankers, bee keepers, squatters and artists to find out what they love and hate about the city. Not surprisingly, the answers are as wildly different as the interviewees themselves. London is seen as a city of opportunity, emotional death, culture, and isolation, depending on who is talking. The interviews themselves are fascinating to read – particularly the ones with the street photographer, garbage collector, chef and rickshaw driver. This book nicely demonstrates that everyone does, indeed, have a story.

Reviewed by Barbara Cothern