At Home – Bill Bryson

With his new book, Bill Bryson, the travel, science and almost everything else writer, explores a subject a little closer to home – his own home.   It was built as a parsonage in 1851.  An unusual starting point, but it leads to several unexpected journeys through history.  Bryson has a way with the English language and a knack for making common things interesting and often, delightful.

Each room in the house is a chapter, from The Hall to The Attic.  Each lends itself to a zigzag historical path that might explain how we ended up with a four-tined fork, or why stairs were invented.   Some of these excursions can be puzzling – what does the scullery (a room for washing dishes) have to do with a major scandal in the Victorian era?

It’s all good fun, however, and Bryson usually makes the connections seems plausible.  At Home is similar in feel and style to his earlier A Short History of Nearly Everything; it’s almost a sequel.  With 452 pages and several illustrations, At Home is an enjoyable yet curious ride.


About meremention

Resident of the Granite State, I am a freelance writer who also toils as a research analyst.
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One Response to At Home – Bill Bryson

  1. Stella says:

    You got my interest peaked! I’d love to read the book. 🙂


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