*Starred Review* Even the most avid readers of travel guides and travel literature will not have encountered a book quite like this one. It is huge and heavy but reasonably priced, and it is vastly informative, which is its calling card. All the writers who contribute to the Lonely Planet travel guide series have put heads, knowledge, and experience together and come up with an A-Z
series of capsule profiles of every country in the world
, 230 in number. Each country gets a two-page spread, on which are placed, like luscious dishes set before one at a feast, illustrations that are typical of Lonely Planet's unique, non-picture-postcard brand of shots. The accompanying text presents a cogent rundown of the best experiences for gaining the essence of the place; books to read beforehand; music to listen to before you go; food and drink to consume once you are there; and a few brief but pungent closing comments on the trademark things to do and buy and see and what, ultimately, is the best surprise awaiting the tourist. For borrowers in the travel section to sit down, look at, and make notes from, without taking off the premises. Brad HooperCopyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
San Francisco Chronicle
, November 14, 2004
'Lonely Planet's photographs are technically perfect...and with all those images, every reader will find something to admire.'