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At Home : A Short History of Private Life by Bill Bryson
  

At Home : A Short History of Private Life

Biography / Autobiography   History   The Real World   

RRP £8.99

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Selected by Sarah Broadhurst

October 2012 Guest Editor Simon Garfield on At Home...

Another American male, I’m afraid, but a prime example of how popular non-fiction doesn’t have to dumb down to appeal. And it’s a sort of map book, an intriguing journey room-by-room through Bryson’s Victorian rectory in Norfolk, from the passage to the study to the garden, with heaps of fascinating social history folded in at each step. The note to self when reading this (and indeed most of Bryson) is: research more, write more clearly.

Sarah Broadhurst's view...

Bill Bryson turns is eyes inwards to look at the everyday things that add up to make the real history of the world. As he ventures around his house he discovers a multitude of things some fascinating, some disconcerting and all talked about in the style we have come to love and cherish from Mr Bryson.

Shortlisted for the Galaxy Non-Fiction Book of the Year 2010.

Featured on The Book Show on Sky Arts on 29 May 2010.

If you like Bill Bryson you might also like to read books by Stephen Clarke.

Who is Sarah Broadhurst

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Synopsis

At Home : A Short History of Private Life by Bill Bryson

What does history really consists of? Centuries of people quietly going about their daily business - sleeping, eating, having sex, endeavouring to get comfortable. And where did all these normal activities take place? At home. This was the thought that inspired Bill Bryson to start a journey around the rooms of his own house, an 1851 Norfolk rectory, to consider how the ordinary things in life came to be. And what he discovered are surprising connections to anything from the Crystal Palace to the Eiffel Tower, from scurvy to body-snatching, from bedbugs to the Industrial Revolution, and just about everything else that has ever happened, resulting in one of the most entertaining and illuminating books ever written about the history of the way we live.


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Reviews

A work of constant delight and discovery...His great skill is to make daily life simultaneously strange and familiar, and in so doing, help us to recognise ourselves. A treasure: don't leave home without it -- Judith Flanders Sunday Telegraph Enchanting... Bryson tackled science in his brilliant A Short History of Nearly Everything. This new book could as easily be categorised as 'a short history of nearly everything else'... extraordinarily entertaining -- Antonia Senior The Times Not just hugely readable but a genuine pageturner... None of these things, needless to say, are as easy as Bryson in his ever-genial way makes them seem -- James Walton Daily Telegraph Entertaining, fact-packed... He is a cheery, idiosyncratic guide, eclectic rather than scholarly, a true populariser. At Home will have every reader eyeing home rather differently Financial Times The much-loved writer takes the attention to detail that made A Short History of Nearly Everything such a fantastic guide to all things science, and applies it to our homes. Written in his laid-back style, this is a wonderful celebration of what makes a house a home News of the World


About the Author

Bill Bryson

Bill Bryson was born in Des Moines, Iowa, in 1951. He settled in England in 1977, and lived for many years with his English wife and four children in North Yorkshire. He and his family then moved to America for a few years but have now returned to the UK. He is the bestselling author of The Lost Continent, Mother Tongue, Neither Here Nor There, Made in America, Notes From a Small Island, A Walk in the Woods, Notes From a Big Country, Down Under and, most recently, A Short History of Nearly Everything. He is also the author of the bestselling African Diary (a charity book for CARE International).

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Book Info

Publication date

26th May 2011

Author

Bill Bryson

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Author's Website

www.billbryson.co.uk/

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Publisher

Black Swan an imprint of Transworld Publishers Ltd

Format

Paperback
704 pages

Categories

Biography / Autobiography
History
The Real World

Social & cultural history

ISBN

9780552772556

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