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!
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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