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Gin Glorious Gin: How Mother's Ruin Became the Spirit of London

Olivia Williams

7 Reviews

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Prose: non-fiction, History

A colourful and fascinating history of our favourite spirit told through the life and times of our capital city.

GIN GLORIOUS GIN is a vibrant cultural history of London seen through the prism of its most iconic drink. Leading the reader through the underbelly of the Georgian city via the Gin Craze, detouring through the Empire, to the emergence of cocktail bars in the West End, the story is brought right up to date with the resurgence of class in a glass - the Ginnaissance.

As gin has crossed paths with Londoners of all classes and professions over the past three hundred years it has become shorthand for metropolitan glamour and alcoholic squalor in equal measure. In and out of both legality and popularity, gin is a drink that has seen it all.

GIN GLORIOUS GIN is quirky, informative, full of famous faces - from Dickens to Churchill, Hogarth to Dr Johnson - and introduces many previously unknown Londoners, hidden from history, who have shaped the city and its signature drink.

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Praise for Gin Glorious Gin: How Mother's Ruin Became the Spirit of London

  • Full of fun and fascinating detail - Jilly Cooper

  • This is just the tonic! - Rachel Johnson

  • A real treat for gin lovers - Mark Hix

  • Finally - the book that provides the background to today's gin craze. The perfect present (along with a bottle of gin) for any gin lover - Fiona Beckett, Guardian wine critic

  • I blame this book for my newly-discovered gin addiction - Bryony Gordon

  • A refreshing cocktail of a biography, fizzing with historical detail. Loved it. - Viv Groskop

  • Entertaining - The Independent

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Olivia Williams

Olivia graduated with a scholarship in Modern History from St Edmund Hall, Oxford, where she remained for her master's degree. She worked as a journalist before writing her first book Gin Glorious Gin, and now works as a freelance writer living in London.

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