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5.0 out of 5 stars Everyday life back then, December 31, 2006
This review is from: Remembering the '40s: A Decade in Words and Pictures (Hardcover)
Like the author of this book the Forties fascinate me but there seems very few photobooks about the decade. Nick Freeth looks back on those years from a rather personal perspective so don't expect a comprehensive analyses, for that I would suggest: THE AMERICAN CENTURY: PEOPLE, POWER AND POLITICS - AN ILLUSTRATED HISTORY by Harold Evans, it has good images and text and each spread covers a topic so it works as a dip-in sort of book.

The decade is not easy to cover in a general sense because the Second World War mostly overshadows the post-war years. Freeth, probably rightly, devotes eight pages to the military and then gets into the domestic and social life in America. Some of the chapter heads might give you an idea of the contents: On Main Street; A Place of Our Own; At Work and School; It's the Weekend or That's Entertainment. All the chapters have a mix of text and photos though the book is really visual. Someone has done some excellent picture research because I thought the choice of photos and graphics was rather good but unfortunately, in many cases, an interesting image (a colorful ad from a consumer weekly for example) is really too small to benefit the reader. Most of the photos are black and white with color provided by printed graphic material.

The book's design is rather basic and in a way it looks a little like a forties publication (I wonder if this was deliberate?) and it does invite comparison with another book covering the same decade: Decade of Triumph: The 40s (Our American Century) where the choice of photos and production is fine but at least half the pages are war oriented.

Both books though reveal how interesting the decade was but I especially like Nick Freeth's book because of the unusual photo selection.

***FOR AN INSIDE LOOK click 'customer images' under the cover.
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Remembering the '40s: A Decade in Words and Pictures
Remembering the '40s: A Decade in Words and Pictures by Nick Freeth (Hardcover - August 22, 2002)
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