Read Waterloo-City, City-Waterloo: The Waterloo and City Line by Leanne Shapton Online


Leanne Shapton, author of Important Artifacts and Personal Property from the Collection of Lenore Doolan and Harold Morris and Swimming Studies, creates an authorly and artistic response to travel, work and being a passenger - part of a series of twelve books tied to the twelve lines of the London Underground. In Waterloo-City, City-Waterloo , Leanne Shapton creates an autLeanne Shapton, author of Important Artifacts and Personal Property from the Collection of Lenore Doolan and Harold Morris and Swimming Studies, creates an authorly and artistic response to travel, work and being a passenger - part of a series of twelve books tied to the twelve lines of the London Underground. In Waterloo-City, City-Waterloo , Leanne Shapton creates an authorly and artistic response to the Waterloo and City line's particular length and those who travel on it. Shapton observes the particularities of the line's rush-hour passengers and imagines a number of their interior monologs, in both verbal and visual detail. The variety of commuters ruminations and obsessions result in a detailed and illustrated breakdown of the line's distance and time - its brevity, its passage between only two stations, its existence as almost primarily a shuttle for office workers going between their homes and the business district of the City. The layout of the book reflects the two stops on the line, one half of the book representing the Waterloo-City ourgoing journey, and the second half, the City-Waterloo return voyage....

Title : Waterloo-City, City-Waterloo: The Waterloo and City Line
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9781846146916
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 160 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Waterloo-City, City-Waterloo: The Waterloo and City Line Reviews

  • Gavin Felgate
    2020-01-30 20:41

    Leanne Shapton's inspiration for this book was: "The endless toggle between two stations". The format of the book is an abstract one, with two parts that start from either side of the book. So, open from the front and you will find a section headed "OUTGOING", while turning to the back will reveal a second part called "RETURN".This book is not so much made up of continuous prose so much as a series of vignettes, all of whom are set off by people who the author has presumably seen on the trains. As you read through, you will find several descriptions of passengers on a train travelling from Waterloo station to Bank Station at the heart of the City of London, mostly talking about their appearance and behaviour. Often, the book goes off on tangents which are evidently the author imagining what their lives must be like and what they must be thinking.I noticed when I read the "RETURN" section that the many of the same passengers were being described, only later in the day, so it felt like I was looking at how they were thinking and feeling at two different stages in their lives. Leanne Shapton works as an illustrator, so a large amount of the book is taken up by her sketches, all of which are quite abstract in nature. In both halves a description of a woman scrolling through pictures on her phone leads to several pages of baby photos, illustrating what the author believes her to be looking at. Several pages show illustrations of exactly where people were sitting and standing on the train carriages through the use of a series of blotches on the page, forming works of art in the process.I wasn't sure about this at first but as I got into the book, I found it quite enjoyable. I occasionally love to wonder exactly what other peoples' purpose in travelling somewhere on the train is, and this book examines it in almost obsessive, voyeuristic, detail. The way that the author imagines what someone's life is like and imagines how things have changed for them in a day is fascinating. This is also a book that you can read quite fast, particularly since about half of the pages are taken up by illustrations and photographs. Worth a try.

  • Darryl
    2020-01-28 21:32

    The Waterloo & City Line is easily the shortest and least used of the 11 current London Underground lines. It runs between two busy stations, Waterloo on the South Bank beneath the National Rail station and Bank in the historic heart of the capital's financial district. The trip is just under 1½ miles in length and takes barely 4 minutes, which is still longer than the similar Times Square to Grand Central Terminal shuttle along 42nd Street in Manhattan.Waterloo-City City-Waterloo consists of brief external descriptions and the imagined thoughts of several people riding the subway, along with mostly inscrutable diagrams that include scribbles on newspapers, large dots in meaningless configurations, and drawings of what appears to be water in motion, presumably from the River Thames, as this line passes underneath it for a portion of the short journey. The dialogues are mostly petty and mean-spirited, as all riders seem to hate their jobs, their lives and their lovers and friends, and most obsess about their attractiveness (or lack of it) and their personal miseries. The most appealing portions of the book were the two collections of photos of babies and toddlers, although all of the children were white, which was rather anachronistic in multicultural London and its diverse population of subway passengers. This was a very disappointing read, whose shallow depth matches the brief length of the Underground line it was meant to portray.

  • Benjy
    2020-02-01 19:36

    This is really a three-star book but I love Leanne Shapton and can't bear to lower her rating average here (currently 3.07 at the time of this review).What's odd about this book is the structural conceit that it describes a morning commute and the home bound return in the evening. But the line itself is an incredibly short shuttle that -- while it does lend itself to wonderfully evocative superficial descriptions of train passengers and the dips into private consciousness that the book trades in -- with the exception of Shapton's handsome dot portraits of train riders, the book doesn't really reflect the constant shuttle and unquenchable misery of the W-C line; it reads more as if this were a long ride that gave Shapton's observer character a chance to let her mind wander into and around her car mates. But the real ride only allows for that in a contrived way.Because the observed characters are visited only twice, there's not much of an emotional connection or progression. It's a fun experiment but a bit slight compared to Shapton's other work. She does do lovely things with the paintings, drawings and photographs that are interspersed throughout. I'm going to give a try to a few of the other books in the series -- that they even thought to commission Shapton for this bodes well -- but for those new to her, go with Important Artifacts... or Swimming Studies. Was She Pretty? is probably closest in form to this but has a lot more going on and is far more rewarding.

  • Niklas Pivic
    2020-02-20 23:31

    This book is experimental and lovely. It treats the reader as an intelligent being, while presenting a lot of stuff - views of people, photographs, imagery as though it was run through a Brian Eno ambient track filled with guitars by My Bloody Valentine. People in the subway are observed as one-liners. "Sunglasses like the grill of a car". A man's perspective. A woman's perspective. Sexism at work. Internal thoughts. "Why's David's name before mine [in an e-mail sent from somebody]? Does she prefer him over me?"A refreshing book, which one turns upside down and starts reading from the back flap having reached half of the book. Demanding and rewarding.

  • Mike Mcconnell
    2020-01-29 22:25

    A mix of stream of conciousness and multimedia display. This book is somewhere between a book, a play, a short film and a multimedia presentation.We dip in and out of various people commuting on London's shortest line, sometimes we only see the outside, sometimes their texts and emails and sometimes their innermost thoughts and feelings. While ther is no cohesive narrative, no feeling that the passengers are all on the same journey at the same time, there is a spectrum of people. The fragments of their lives form a mosaic along with the pictures of babies, doodles and other ancillary data.

  • Mjstevens1
    2020-02-16 21:36

    A rather lovely little volume, which reminded me quite a bit of Geoff Ryman's 253 (which was originally a website and then turned into a book in the late 90s). Little snapshots of the lives of passengers on the Waterloo-City London Underground line, delivered as either stream-of-consciousness thought bites, extracts from emails and texts, photos, illustrations, or poetry.

  • Sian Lile-Pastore
    2020-02-08 22:19

    I love Leanne Shapton and this book is really interesting but it is quite slight. It's subtitle is 'A Sketchbook' and it is very much that - sketches, snippets and doodles taken from an outward and return journey by tube, and it also captures a moment in time of 2013 London/Uk.It's lovely, but I don't think it's going to stick with me like her other books.

  • Abbie Phillips
    2020-02-04 20:21

    Interesting artistic approach to the musings that may occur during the short commute from Waterloo to Bank. A must read for Londoner's interested in the tube, or for people who enjoy a looser prose. Perfect length for a commute too!

  • Charlotte Coyne
    2020-01-25 19:40


  • Idlan Zakaria
    2020-02-03 19:15

    An interesting graphic-novel / sketchbook way of capturing people on a tube journey. Wished I was creative enough to do something like this myself

  • Peter
    2020-01-23 20:21

    Five stars for part one, three stars for part two.

  • Callum McAllister
    2020-02-21 22:34

    Leanne Shapton is such a legend. This had the same quality that Was She Pretty? had in the way it got inside the private thoughts of random strangers in a really convincing way -- particularly the sort of thoughts we know we have all the time but never tell anyone we have.Leanne just knows. She knows.Also, anything with references to Mrs Dalloway wins me over on principle.