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Black Gold: The History of How Coal Made Britain Paperback – 12 May 2022

4.6 out of 5 stars 427 ratings

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Review

‘[A] rich social history … Given coal’s image, a popular history might seem a foolhardy undertaking. Yet Paxman’s book could hardly be more colourful, and I enjoyed every page enormously … A mining community, as Paxman points out, was not just a place of dirt and danger. It was a “place where you slept and ate, visited the doctor, fell in love, had your children and entertained yourself” … One day soon, Paxman says, we may forget it was ever there. But his book does a fine job of bringing it alive, and deserves the widest possible readership’
Dominic Sandbrook, Sunday Times

‘A rich seam of history … Coal made Britain top nation, but we don’t talk about it much … Much more than the story of an industry: it is a history of Britain from an unusual angle, vividly told, that throws new light on familiar features of our national landscape … Paxman’s fine narrative powers are at their best in his account of [miner’s strikes] … From its beginnings to its end, the industry that made our country what it is, for good and ill, was a brutal business. Paxman is determined that we should not forget it’
Emma Duncan, The Times

‘[A] terrific history … Paxman is not afraid to call out poor behaviour … A rich seam for acerbic Paxman’
Kathryn Hughes, Mail on Sunday

‘A really interesting, timely book’
Steve Wright, BBC Radio 2

‘The history of coal in Britain might not sound immediately gripping, but it was. Paxo brings it all to life – the men, women and children toiling in the dark, in conditions no one could endure today. The courage of those communities shines from every page’
Conn Iggulden, Daily Express

‘Filled with fun facts … Jeremy Paxman is particularly good at explaining why coal mattered so much. He has a sharp pen, and a good eye for detail’
Daily Telegraph

‘Paxman tells a good story and he doesn’t mind who knows it. Ebullient and condescending at the same time, he is particularly good on set pieces’
New Statesman

About the Author

Jeremy Paxman was born in 1950 and studied English Literature at Cambridge. Unable to get another job, he became a BBC reporter and then a studio presenter. Over a quarter-century on Newsnight, he revolutionised the cosy relationship between interviewer and politician and, more than any other interviewer, took the side of the viewer against the guest. He is also quizmaster on University Challenge, has written and presented television series such as Empire, The Victorians, Great Britain’s Great War, and is the author of numerous articles for many publications . He has also written many books including the best-selling The English, On Royalty and Friends in High Places. In his spare time, he enjoys fly-fishing.

Product details

  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ William Collins (12 May 2022)
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • Paperback ‏ : ‎ 320 pages
  • ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 0008128367
  • ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-0008128364
  • Dimensions ‏ : ‎ 12.9 x 2.6 x 19.8 cm
  • Customer reviews:
    4.6 out of 5 stars 427 ratings

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Customer reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6 out of 5
427 global ratings

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