I enjoyed this book SO much! I like Bill Bryson as the narrator, he has a very pleasant accent and voice.
I was fascinated by so much of the history and information that he put forth, I kept being inspired to pause and then go check out pictures on Google of the places he was describing and researching on my own some of the stories he told.
The only thing negative I have to say is that without the printed words in front of you, figuring out how to spell some of the names and places was a challenge when I went to look them up!
I feel enriched and enlightened by this book, Bryson makes history come alive and makes it fascinating!
While I didn't actively dislike this audio book, I wasn't really enchanted with it and expected much more because of the high ranking in audible favorites.
I did like certain story lines, like the Walter/Jacob relationship the and the Rosemary/Jacob (older Jacob) story line that was so realistic, other lines were touched on, like the Elephant and man connection or the horse and woman connection, but were left fairly sketchy and under developed.
I also felt that some of the descriptions, especially of the uncomfortably sexy type were overly graphic and didn't add much to my understanding of the characters and the story line. I even found myself fast forwarding through those spots.
I could easily imagine some of the scenes as if they were happening on a movie screen due to the abundance of incidental details and descriptive captures of the characters' movements and mannerisms.
So I won't say that it is a waste of time, but just that it is fairly easy and unchallenging and I prefer something possibly a little bit more "meaty" and interesting. I liked the ending.
I love Michael Medved and I was so entertained and enlightened about what makes him tick. What a fascinating and atypical childhood and young adulthood he had! My greatest disappointment was hearing the story told in first person by someone other than Michael himself. (He has a very distinctive voice that I really like listening to) But after awhile I got used to the narrator and focused on the story while imagining Medved saying it in my head. I think there is a version of this in audio format with Michael reading his own words, I was surprised when this version wasn't him.
I really enjoyed the book and narration but found myself cringing everytime the characters used unnecessarily vulgar language. I don't feel the dialogue would have been hurt at all if fewer vulgarities were used, and I felt that some of the sex "scenes" and the emphasis on those was somewhat gratuitous and I would have enjoyed the book and story so much more without that element.
I really enjoyed this story and especially liked the audio-actresses who gave it personality.
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