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One Summer: America 1927 Audio Download – Unabridged

4.4 out of 5 stars 670 customer reviews

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Format: Paperback
How on earth one person can create a book, albeit a very long book, out of such an extreme diversity of events, developments, people and plain downright pecularity, that is quite simply riveting and entertaining and somehow holds itself together? That person can only be Bill Bryson. No idea how he does it, but this is a book that is great fun to read, will contribute at least one fact to quite possibly every subject you can think of, and by the end of it, make you feel as if you have been at the centre of a whirlwind. As America must have felt at the end of the four months of summer in 1927 - whew.

A lot happened or came to fruition over that four months. Bill Bryson would seem to touch on all of them in some way - amongst others the beginnings of television, talking films, manipulation of the US finanical system, Ponzi schemes, Al Capone, boxing, devastating floods in the Mississippi, Henry Ford's new Model T car. But of total dominance, overshadowing everything that occurred during that period are the trans Atlantic flight of Charles Lindbergh and the magnetic power of Babe Ruth - baseball and planes. You will learn a lot about both, much of which you never really needed or wanted to know, but because it is written about in such an engaging and conversational manner, somehow the facts, and there are many of them, do stay with you.

However this compendium of often quite bizarre, fancy that, overall useless but intensely fascinating informaton is not so much about April to September 1927, but about the years that lead up to the various events that reach their zenith over that particular year. The book more becomes a history, mostly social and economic of America during the 12-13 years since the end of WWI .
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Wonderfully Bryson. Writes like a dream and rambles around, digs up obscure fascinating nuggets of information. Staggeringly elegantly written. That style is as important as the superb stories. If reading is a pleasure for the way words are used then this is a classic example. But it is important to read it slowly to make it last and or savour. I was fascinated to read the review of the ...person ... who gave it one star because they hadn't read it. Hilariously stupid. Read the other 5 star reviews and get a feel for this. One to comeback to in a year - there is too much here to absorb at a single sitting.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Is there any kind of book that couldn't be improved a thousandfold by getting Bill Bryson to write it? Already my favourite-books-list includes 'Mother Tongue' a glorious history of the English language, 'A Short History of Everything,' which wraps up a thousand years of science and 'At Home' which is a cosy history of domesticity. And I've lost count of the number of times I've recommended Bryson's 'Shakespeare'. So that's linguistics, science, and literary biography to add to the canon of travel books that Bryson is best known for, and now here he is with an off the wall volume of American History that packs about half a million little-known facts about the American Summer of 1927 into five hundred pages and somehow ends up creating the most compelling book I've read since ... well probably since the last Bill Bryson book.

Bryson has stumbled upon a magical and pivotal summer in US history, and in his infectious, folksy style he takes us on a romp from May to September introducing a riotous cast of characters that you simply couldn't invent. Take the writer Zane Grey, for example, who earned a third of a million dollars from his books in 1927. Bryson reveals that Grey's hobbies included compiling detailed journals of his sexual exploits, and being photographed in the act. 'Edgar Rice Burroughs,' Bryson tells us, 'had a tamer life than Grey - but then, after all, who didn't?' It is this deliciously conversational style, a compote of statistics and gossip, that makes this book so compulsively readable. The summer is bookended by two events that gripped the consciousness of America - Lindbergh's crossing of the Atlantic, and Babe Ruth's record breaking season with a baseball bat.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
As a long time fan of Bill Bryson who was beginning to think that his great days were past, this was a welcome return to something close to the form of old. A wonderful mixture of straight history and the grotesque. Though not laugh out loud, it was engaging and entertaining. Recommended.
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Format: Hardcover
"One Summer: America, 1927" by Bill Bryson is one of those books that will make you ask yourself why I didn't write something like that.

In his book, Bill Bryson who is great narrator managed to create great story out of the events that are hard to imagine they can make book.
He documented all the events that happened this exciting 1927 year, starting with Charles Lindbergh's flight across the Atlantic that happened a bit earlier than this great summer.

For all those who are accustomed to Bryson work, they know what can be expected.
He writes about the history events but he does that on his special way making it more interesting than these stories are when you read them.

Beside lot of big events that happened that year that include Al Capone and Babe Ruth inside reader can also find some people and events related to pop cultural trivia and memorabilia, like Alvin "Shipwreck" Kelly flagpole record or Al Jolson's "The Jazz Singer" that changed motion picture industry.

The author has succeeded to very well connect all these events, that at first glance seem unrelated, to a very exciting mosaic of interesting events that's a pleasure to read.

"One Summer" is an excellent book from start to the end, and it would be great for today's kids to read his books given his history teachings that are completely different from the usual and will interest everyone.

It seems that 1927 was a very interesting year to live but it is equally interesting to read about it with this historical distance.

Therefore, I can fully recommend you to give a chance to Bill Bryson's book especially if you have never read any other his works.
Although maybe it doesn't sound very interesting to read about most well-known facts, you'll see that due to his style he made great book about great summer of 1927.
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