Bill Bryson paints a portrait of America in 1927 by weaving threads from many aspects of American life between the two world wars -- Prohibition, aviation, crime and punishment, the rise of tabloid media, baseball, radio, movies, etc. It's a complicated picture, but very well executed. I picked this book thinking it might be mildly interesting because I have enjoyed other books by Bryson, but it was so much better that I had expected.
Have read Bryson's book about the Appalachian Trail. He is a snob and rude about some of the places and people he wrote about. The contents of this book redeemed my interest in reading but not so much listening.
This was a history book. No real favorites.
Absolutely anyone else. He almost ruined listening to the book.
Although "history is a pack of lies we play upon the dead", Bryson's slice of time was interesting and well worth reading another period. Please do let him narrate.
I am a huge fan of Bill Bryson's writing and thoroughly enjoyed listening to this book! His way of making connections between events and people makes the book come alive. If you are a Bryson fan already, add it to your book list. If you are not yet a Bryson fan, get the book and become one.
This is a highly readable, fast-moving and fascinating book, filled to the brim with amazing, sometimes mind-boggling, details.
Although a clear and engaging writer, Bryson's reading is often off-putting. He drops final syllables and emphasizes others in what becomes an odd, artificial-sounding and often distracting cadence. The listening experience would have been greatly enhanced by a professional reader.
That said, I highly recommend this book. Its written content far outweighs Bryson's shortcomings as a narrator. One listens in awe and wonder as, chapter by chapter, you hear historical facts that put his chosen era into clear and sometimes dismaying focus. A truly brilliant book.
I everything Bill Bryson writes. he is gripping and impossible to put down. He ties the different event together with masterful clarity.
It was a good book although I got the feeling that many of the stories were pulled from popular media accounts as they seem far fetched or sensationalized. For instance the boxer having 6 teeth knocked out. You can watch the fight on YouTube and read the accounts it does not seem to be the case. Very interesting book if you are a fan of popular American history
This book was a true delight. It's hard to believe that all history happened in one summer. Mr. Bryson writes in a way that is engaging and keeps me hooked! I highly recommend to anyone that enjoys history.
An interesting format, reviewing world events month by month over a series of topics including aviation, baseball, sensational trials, and politics. starting in May 1927, Mr. Bryson gives sufficient background to the individual events and people to flesh out what the world was like in 1927. On a personal note, I enjoyed learning a bit abour what the world was like in the months before the birth of my dad at the end of September 1927.