Audie Award Finalist, History, 2014
One of the most admired nonfiction writers of our time retells the story of one truly fabulous year in the life of his native country - a fascinating and gripping narrative featuring such outsized American heroes as Charles Lindbergh, Babe Ruth, and yes Herbert Hoover, and a gallery of criminals (Al Capone), eccentrics (Shipwreck Kelly), and close-mouthed politicians (Calvin Coolidge). It was the year Americans attempted and accomplished outsized things and came of age in a big, brawling manner. What a country. What a summer. And what a writer to bring it all so vividly alive for us in this certain best-seller.
©2013 Bill Bryson (P)2013 Random House Audio
If I wanted a biography of Lindbergh, I would have bought one. This book is billed as about the summer of 1927, but Bryson spends so much time on backstories that I felt the book hardly touched on that summer. So much time was spent on Charles Lindbergh that Bryson should have just written about him. I was sorely disappointed with this book.
Great story about a largely forgotten era. Key figures and events make for moments intrigue every minute. The readers vocal tone may leave something to be desired but the story makes up for it in droves.
I have read or listened to many Bill Bryson books, and One Summer is definitely my favorite. It grabbed my interest at the start, and never let go. There were just so many fascinating things that happened in America in 1927. Babe Ruth, Charles Lindbergh, prohibition and gangsters, anarchists, etc.. This book goes deeply enough into the key characters to satisfy, but also has so many fascinating stories. I sometimes look at life today and think with nostalgia about what life must have been like in those simple olden days. Reading this, you see America in 1927 for the good and the bad, and I realize life today is not so bad. If social history has any interest to you, you should try this book. The author narrated it, and it took me a while to get used to his voice. I wish he had left that job to a professional. Still, I loved the book.
Bryson is a great researcher and a brilliant writer. He can make anything entertaining. I've read most of his books. Still in this book, I did find myself skipping some sections of people I didn't find all that interesting when he was writing about aviation. Other sections great! Loved the baseball and boxing details. I kept saying to my husband, "did you know that . . . "
As much as l like Bryson as a writer, I would have enjoyed a professional performance of this book. I almost quit listening, but then adjusted to Bryson voice and style and finished it. I'm glad I did.
I really enjoyed the material and the writing. Bryson has a rare talent for weaving facts into an absorbing story, he just shouldn't narrate it out loud. As interested as I was in the what was being said, I was constantly distracted by Bryson's odd hybrid accent and annoying pacing. Worth listening to, but would have been much better with a professional reader at the mic.
The reading is so bad, so tin-eared, I was feeling sorry for the author, until I discovered that the reader was actually the author himself. He is always stressing the wrong word. It sounds as if he hadn't read the book!
Reading, the arts and physical activity clarify, explain, illustrate, and interpret life’s goods and bads.
No, the tale is a wonderful listen, and has plenty of content but nothing that needs to be reexamined. Once told and heard is enough thank you.
Done well but letf you with the threat that we, like the story's characters, will all have an end; a passing. Did not leave me threatened. Just in melocholia. Seems like Mr. Bryson is considering the duration of all things human.
He is a very competent reader, yet this book, I suspect, would be a good read as well as being a good listen.
No, a little here and then a little more there seemed to be just right. Yet, it wa a pleasant drift into facts and data told in a most charming manner.
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