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Notes from a Small Island


Notes from a Small Island Cover


Staff Pick

Sometimes laugh-out-loud, sometimes poignant, Bill Bryson takes a trip to the villages of his beloved Britain.
Recommended by the Travel Team,

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

"Suddenly, in the space of a moment, I realized what it was that I loved about Britain-which is to say, all of it."

After nearly two decades spent on British soil, Bill Bryson — bestselling author of The Mother Tongue and Made in America — decided to return to the United States. ("I had recently read," Bryson writes, "that 3.7 million Americans believed that they had been abducted by aliens at one time or another,so it was clear that my people needed me.") But before departing, he set out on a grand farewell tour of the green and kindly island that had so long been his home.

Veering from the ludicrous to the endearing and back again, Notes from a Small Islandis a delightfully irreverent jaunt around the unparalleled floating nation that has produced zebra crossings, Shakespeare, Twiggie Winkie's Farm, and places with names like Farleigh Wallop and Titsey. The result is an uproarious social commentary that conveys the true glory of Britain, from the satiric pen of an unapologetic Anglophile.


"A book suffused with the sheer joy of being alive." Sunday Express (London)


"Notes from a Small Island is, like its subject matter, a delight." Minneapolis Star-Tribune

About the Author

Bill Bryson is the bestselling author of At Home, A Walk in the Woods, The Lost Continent, Made in America, The Mother Tongue, and A Short History of Nearly Everything, winner of the Aventis Prize. Born in Des Moines, Iowa, Bryson lives in England with his wife and children.

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Lagniappe believer, August 5, 2012 (view all comments by Lagniappe believer)
With the London Olympic Games in full swing, I'm beginning to plan that trip to London, which I've wanted to take for several years. Bill Bryson's travelog is simply hilarious, but also well written. As an American baby boomer, who lived in London and Yorkshire for more than 20 years and married a British lady, Bryson's perspective is both loving and learned. After having read his wonderful "A Walk In the Woods," I'm convinced that there is no subject whose funny side he can't reveal. As much a love letter to his adopted Merry Old England (which he was preparing to leave, to return to America to live with his family, when he wrote this travel tribute), Bryson employs all the Twain-like humorist's tools, which he honed at a major London newspaper, to keep the reader glued to the pages that he can't turn quickly enough! Bryson spends much of his time herein on the famous Brit Rail trains (and busses), but he brings to life the cities and other places he chooses to visit, many outside the average American tourist's itenerary, in a fashion that will appeal to anyone planning a visit to the countries of the Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. As one reviewer's comments on the dust jacket warns, however, this is not a book that the reader should embrace in public, lest his snorting and laugh-out-loud guffawing put him in danger of being shown the door!
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Pagoda, June 26, 2012 (view all comments by Pagoda)
If you've ever wanted to explore Britain through the eyes of your fussy, slightly curmudgeonly, but ultimately warm and lovable uncle, Bryson's book is a must own. His appreciation for the minutiae of British life comes through in his witty and detailed descriptions of everything from British naming conventions (visit fabulous Nether Wallop) to the eccentricities of the fifth Duke of Portland and his underground mansion. For better or worse Bryson will bring out the anglophile in you through this ode to the motherland, and about the time you finish reading you'll want to start planning your own cross country trek.
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Product Details

Bryson, Bill
William Morrow Paperbacks
by Bill Bryson
by Bill Bryson
New York
Description and travel
Travel and travel guides
Europe - Gt. Britain/England
Europe - Great Britain
Essays & Travelogues
Form - Essays
England Description and travel.
Europe - Great Britain - England
General Travel
Bryson, Bill - Journeys - England
Travel Writing-General
Edition Description:
Trade PB
Series Volume:
no. 54
Publication Date:
Grade Level:
8.10x5.28x.81 in. .57 lbs.

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Travel » Europe » Great Britain
Travel » Sale Books
Travel » Travel Writing » Europe
Travel » Travel Writing » General

Notes from a Small Island Used Trade Paper
0 stars - 0 reviews
$7.95 In Stock
Product details 336 pages Harper Perennial - English 9780380727506 Reviews:
"Staff Pick" by ,

Sometimes laugh-out-loud, sometimes poignant, Bill Bryson takes a trip to the villages of his beloved Britain.

"Review" by , "A book suffused with the sheer joy of being alive."
"Review" by , "Notes from a Small Island is, like its subject matter, a delight."
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