(Nu even in het Engels.)
As you may have guessed, with this blog I'm trying to raise your interest for a book I've written called 'A Millennium of Amsterdam'. Let me explain why.
I first thought of a book like this when I visited London years ago. I found an impressive number of guides and history books, but I didn't find the one I was hoping for: a concise introduction to the city's spatial development, spanning its entire history, written in an attractive style, and abundantly illustrated with maps and pictures that are both relevant and appealing to the eye. I looked for a popular book that drew from the specialist knowledge of urban history and spatial planning, to tell the fascinating stories of how the city became what it is today. I wanted it to be both insightful and a good read. I couldn't make up my mind whether I wanted a book to take along in my suitcase, or to read at home - so I decided it had to be fit for both situations.
I looked for the book but it wasn't there. I looked for it in many other cities, and it wasn't there either. This puzzled me. Surely, there must be more people like me, having an interest in the spatial structure of a city and looking for a pleasant introductory book. In the end I decided that if no one wrote it, I had to write it myself. Not about London - not yet - but about the city I know best, Amsterdam.
So, here it is. From the start I wanted 'A Millennium of Amsterdam' to be published in an English edition als well as in Dutch, as a service to anyone visiting this city, searching for a book like this just like I searched for it in London and elsewhere. I hope you will find it useful and likable. It might be just the book you were waiting for.
('A Millennium of Amsterdam' and the Dutch edition, '1000 jaar Amsterdam', will be launched at ARCAM, Prins Hendrikkade 600, Amsterdam, on 23 May at 5 PM. They are published by THOTH Publishers. Retail price 29,90 euro.)