Friday, September 2, 2011

Review Friday: At Home

Have you checked out our On Our Minds book of the year, Bill Bryson's A Walk in the Woods? Do you want more with his blend of humor, information, and ideas to get you wanting to learn a lot more about a great many things?

Check out one of the new additions in our Discoveries collection, Bryson's latest book, At Home.

Bryson is best known for his wide-ranging travel books (everything from exploring Australia to hiking the Appalachian Trail), but here, he stays home, exploring the history and culture whose results can be seen in his home, a former Victorian parsonage.

Along the way, we get to take in the great engineering feats of the Victorian era (like the Crystal Palace), a social history of domestic service, the spice trade, the history of sanitation, and a whole range of everyday items ranging from ice to furniture to fashion to cookbooks. There's a little bit of something for every possible interest in here, all told with Bryson's flair for amusing anecdotes.

If you're interested in hearing a more conversational approach of the book, there's a great hour-long public radio interview with Bryson from Minnesota Public Radio from last fall - you can listen on their website or download the podcast.

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