The story of Smith's life has an almost novel-like plot. The man of humble origins works himself up to great things, but then falls into poverty, partly as a result of overreaching himself but partly because of the machinations of others. But things work out OK in the end, as he eventually gets his due recognition. The book also brings out Winchester's love of the English countryside as he retraces some of the journeys made by Smith two centuries before. The book has been criticised for Winchester's somewhat over-enthusiastic telling of the story, but I say 'What's wrong with that?' - the book is an excellent introduction to the history of geology, and there is a list of suggestions for further reading for those who want to go into the subject more deeply."; include "amazinf.php"; ?>