Brian Berns's Reviews > The Ghost Map: The Story of London's Most Terrifying Epidemic - and How It Changed Science, Cities, and the Modern World

The Ghost Map by Steven Johnson
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's review
Jul 18, 2010

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bookshelves: science, history, cholera, london, non-fiction
Read in July, 2010

A well-written, entertaining, and enlightening slice of historical science. When focused on the 1854 cholera epidemic itself, it is a mystery story with a Sherlock Holmes-ian sense of detail and elegance. On top of that the author has neatly layered 150 years of scientific and historical hindsight to lend context to the central story and tie it to our own time.

The first chapter alone is worth the price of the book - a unflinching description of Victorian London's waste disposal system. Both engrossing and just plain gross.

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