I really enjoyed listening to the book. My daughter had gotten me the Hardback book, but I hadn't read it yet. I love and have loved audio books since the 1980's when they were a bit scarce, not like today. Anyway, I really enjoyed the 'shared experiences' of growing up with this story. Although Bill Bryson is six years older than I am, it was still interesting and often funny to remember how similar my youth was growing up in (then) small town California to his in Iowa. If you to are of that 'age', or just what an idea of what your parents or by now, grand parents life was like, check it out!
I loved this book. It brought back so many memories about growing up in the fifties. Bryson has a unique talent for capturing unique things about places and times and he really captures the strangeness of the 50's. His recollections are almost like "Twilight Zone" stories, but mostly fact, not fiction. I've read a lot of Bryson's books, but this was my first Bryson on Audible. I enjoyed his reading of the book, with his "touch of British" accent.
I wish Bill Bryson had a thousand books I could read. I've read every single one so far and always come away with new and interesting facts through his uniquely funny stories. I am also a big fan of him reading his own material. Only Bryson can convey the unique viewpoints the way they way intended to write them. Buying this book is a no brainer. Get it. You'll love it. If you don't, you've lost your sense of humour about life and need therapy.
For anyone who lived through the 50s or 60s, this audiobook is a nostalgic, thoughtful and sometimes absolutely hilarious listen. I think Bryson's voice is perfectly fine to listen to - a combination American midwestern and British accent.(He has lived in England for almost 40 years) I thoroughly enjoyed this audiobook, including some side-splitting moments of laughter.
This is an exceedingly dull book. It was so disappointing after the witty and highly entertaining "Walk in the Woods" and other travel books by this author. If you've read "Walk in the Woods" and other Bryson travel books and are seeking additional Bryson style wit and originality - I think you will be disappointed.
I too grew up in Iowa, although a bit later and not in Des Moines (my parents still mourn the degeneration of the Des Moines Register), however I totally relate to this story of how life used to be in the 50's for kids in the Midwest. We should all be dead or seriously maimed. The story is very funny and a great listen - I've listened several times just to smile. His descriptions are so great - exaggerations worthy of any school aged boy!
As usual, Bill delivers! His wit and informative narrative remains highly entertaining. Bill grew up in the same era as my parents--giving me a incredible insight as to what life might have been like during their childhood. Bill also does a great job portraying life through a boy's eyes--delightfully insightful!
It was a delight to listen to - and remember when it was you or someone you know who was going through the same misadventures as Bill. It was a walk down your childhood memories in the best of ways. Highly recommended.
There are parts of this story that caused me to pull over to the side of the road for fear of peeing my pants as I drove with tears in my eyes from the laughter. While I admit to being a little crazy, you must catch the expression on the other drivers stuck in traffic with you as you laugh out loud, I know some thought I had lost my mind.
I am a big Bryson fan, I think this is the funniest book of the ones I have read. Strongly recommend this book!
When where you were was special because it wasn't like anyplace else... Bill Bryson remembers a Des Moines in the 50s that had character and a unique set of businesses and places...before the days of chain stores, chain restaurants, indoor malls. The reference to politics is negligible -- it's a great listen. Bryson doesn't take it seriously and neither should the listener.If you are a boomer, laugh away and just ENJOY!