Book a Month: Bill Bryson

No spoilers! This is the beginning of a series, a monthly book review. Seeing as I read them all the time, I thought I might dip into a little scrutinising! Let me know if it’s nonsense. x

From the view of a person who cherishes their fiction collection, Notes from A Small Island offers a fairly painless transition into the real world of nonfiction. Admittedly, it was one I often put down, but when it was perused, it’s possibly the most often I’ve laughed at a book! Honestly, the blurb doesn’t lie when it tells you not to read it in public.

The only issue I found with it was relatability; perhaps it was my fault for picking up a book written by a man then in his forties, but a little of the humour was a tad too (there’s no other word for it) mean for me personally to appreciate it. He’s also fairly pessimistic, but I’d expect for the most part his comments on the lack of agreeable visual aspects of towns to be fairly accurate! Oh, and the towns he actually explores – mostly the thesaurus’ idea of a synonym for Britain…


It’s likely I’m only salty about this due to my own non-Englishness, but I hope it’s a valid point! England doesn’t make up the whole “Island”!

Overall, I’d give this a solid 6 out of 10 for us readers who would perhaps prefer a Young Adult Fiction to an Actual Adult Nonfiction. Let me know if you’re a fan of the latter, though – second and third opinions are welcome, always!

– L


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