"As Neil McKendrick, John Brewer and J.H.Plumb make clear in this important and engrossing book, contemporary observers were witnesses to the birth of what they call a consumer revolution. And it was to have a profound effect on English society and politics as well as on its economy. One of the main purposes of The Birth of a Consumer Society is to map out the territory and to determine the nature and scope of this new consumer market. It is not an easy task, and the authors' sorties into the field are exploratory, suggestive and invariably carried out with great skill and sophistication. Neil McKendrick's and Sir John Plumb's work in this field is classic scholarship, well known to historians, but it is still good to have it collected and developed here. " - Nicholas Phillipson, Sunday Telegraph.