©2000 Bill Bryson; (P)2000 Random House, Inc., Bantam Doubleday Dell Audio Publishing, A Division of Random House Inc.
"Bryson's cheery Australian tale should entertain even the most listless driver. His strength lies in his ability to incorporate astounding facts about the country with nutty personal anecdotes." (Publishers Weekly)
I have yet to listen to any Bryson book that is read by the author which did not leave wanting more. He has one of those minds that experiences life like it was a brand new box of toys. He never fails to leave me conjuring up ways to go to the places he has just described. And his cynical genes assures me that we are somehow related.
Bill Bryson has a wonderful voice to listen to and he brings a story to life through is storytelling. His adventures in Australia had me laughing out loud while learning a lot about the land and the people.
If you like books on audio, you cannot go wrong with Bill Bryson.
I always appreciate when an author will narrate his/her own work, and Bill Bryson's narrations are especially good. I'm a big fan of his books, but this is my absolute favorite of the books he narrates. I was quite literally crying I was laughing so hard at many points in this book. I don't usually re-listen too books, but I know I will have to listen to this one again.
Having enjoyed Bryson's previous writings, I was disappointed by his sleepy performance as a reader. Though amusing, his snobbish tendencies are accentuated by his tone.
If you can find a version with Bill Bryson reading his excellent prose on Australia himself, grab it immediately.
Bryson's books, such as 'A Walk In The Woods', 'Notes From A Small Island' and 'Neither Here Nor There' - with him reading his own material - I can't stress enough how worthwhile having him read the book makes the experience.
Nuances in his expressive but not overbearing voice can make you laugh uncontrollably or wonder in amazement at the startling fact he is conveying.
I guess if I had to specify, it might be his description early in the book about his experience riding around as a passenger guest being shown Metro Sydney, soon after unboarding from the international flight from America; his jet lag etc leads him to fall asleep; his description of how he may appear when thus sleeping in the front passenger side of someone's car as they silently ride around metro Sydney to "show him the sights" etc. is classicly hilarious.
The guy who often reads the unabridged versions of Bill Bryson's audio books, though a fine reader in his own right, has extremely tough competition when compared to the author himself. I do wish Bryson would go to read/record his earlier unabridged titles as he does now. He's a book called 'One Summer' coming out soon which I am eager to add to my Bryson collection. His books are genuinely deeply interesting and highly entertaining - a rare combination he masters well.
Hilarious observations. Having traveled to Aus this book helped us relive our trip and marvel once again about this wonderful place and its mighty cast of characters.
Descriptions of the Box Jellifish as small bags of lethality or something to that effect.
Interesting and entertaining.
Made me want to visit Australia. Lots of interesting stuff about Australia told with Bryson's typical dry wit.
Love his narration style. Great listen--and I learned something about Australia, too!
His discussion of Aborigines was enlightening.
Excellent by any comparison.
Bill F***ing Bryson.
Bill Bryson, doing what he does best; talking about something he knows. Unlike other travel books, he gives you niether all good nor all bad. He seems to have a real love for Australia and Australians but confronts the clear contradictions and faults within the country. He gives you the cities and he give you the outback, he loves both but he also recognizes their tragic places in the Australian culture.
He also adresses the forever enigmatic and heartbreaking history of the Aboriginal people, something lacking in many accounts of Australia.
All in all, its a great listen and only made me want to go to Australia all the more.
Informative, immersive and experiential.
In addition to a hundred memorable, anecdotal 'Bryseconds' (short, engaging, sidebars that never fail to be superbly funny and are not bad in the re-telling when describing the book to others), the magical juxtaposition of rea-life/present day experiences and sojourns alongside the sharing of Australian history (and truly historical characters) weaves a very imagination-provoking tapestry. The unique perspective on the Australian Aborigines - their story, their plight and their level of integration (or lack there of) into Australian society and culture was (embarrassingly) news to me... I'm now on a quest to gain a better understanding of what sound like a fascinating people.I hope I make it to Australia some day, but if I don't - I'll have this book to thank for taking me on a journey there.
Bill as Bill is hard to beat.
Laughter abounds, the book is hugely entertaining.
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