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Notes From a Big Country

Narrated by: William Roberts
Length: 9 hrs and 19 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (21 ratings)
Non-member price: $28.87
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Publisher's Summary

Des Moines, Iowa-born writer Bryson's first success was the travel book The Lost Continent. After living in England for several years, he wanted to go back to the USA to find the perfect little US town of his past, he lovingly called Amalgam. More travel books followed, in the form of Neither Here Nor There (where he travels through Europe), Notes From A Small Island (where he travels around the United Kingdom, before returning back to the USA to live there for good) and A Walk In The Woods (where he walks the Appalachian trail). After moving back to the States, Bryson started to write a column for The Mail on Sunday Night and Day magazine. This is a collection of these column entries. Bryson writes about everything from everyday chores, to suing people, the beach, TV, movies, air conditioners, college, Americana, injury dangers, wasting resources, and holiday seasons.
©1998 Bill Bryson (P)2014 Audible, Inc.

Critic Reviews

"This is Bryson at his best." ( Amazon.co.uk)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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as good as expected

Like always, Bill Bryson knocks it out of the park woth his ability to turn every day events into outstanding stories.
what a legend

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Interesting

Pithy observations and a great insight on the American view of the world in the late 90s.

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    3 out of 5 stars
  • J-H2O
  • 03-10-2006

Bitter or Sweet ? I'm not sure !

I really enjoy Bill Bryson and his sense of observational humour really appeals however, although this was funny at times, because it was a collection of smaller clips I found that I could not get my teeth into it as much. It is worth having in a collection because it is enjoyable but I would not put it high on my list of Bill Bryson must haves. I was expecting it to be like Notes From A Small Island but in this respect I was a little dissappointed.

18 of 19 people found this review helpful

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  • Salter
  • 13-09-2018

Bryson is simply brilliant...

I loved every minute of this..
Bill Brysons observational and situational humour is just fantastic, and I often find myself laughing out loud at some of his observations.
I really enjoyed previous books chronicalling Brysons travels, but this one is slightly different. This is a series of newspaper column articles that he wrote in the late 90's. He covers all manner of different topics, and never fails to put his trademark spin on his findings!
William Roberts does a great job narrating, and he's so good at encapsulating the humour laced throughout the book. I could listen to the Bryson/Roberts combination forever!
Recommended..

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • P. Sharples
  • 19-11-2016

Prefer Bill reading his books

While Bill's stories are always entertaining, I much prefer the versions where it is Bill himself reading them.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Zara
  • 19-03-2015

Great book, well written.

Overall a fantastic buy but for me William Roberts does not have a voice I appreciate listening to hours of.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • maria rocke
  • 31-12-2014

:) loved it

Loved the book and I enjoyed the narrator's reading.... If you like Bill Bryson's witty view of life you will love this one

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Karen
  • 25-03-2008

Very Entertaining

As always, Mr Bryson is very entertaining, and he provides a very interesting account of the trials and tribultations of returning to your mother country after years of being an Alien in another land.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
  • Claire
  • 31-05-2010

Great book, terrible narration

As an avid fan of Bill Bryson, I couldn't wait to download and play this, possibly my favourite book of his. Unfortunately the narrator's voice is so grating and misinterpretive of the content, I cannot listen for more than 10 minutes at a time. It's such a shame. I gave 3 stars for the content, I really love this book, but had to take away for the narration.

6 of 9 people found this review helpful

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  • Derek
  • 08-07-2015

The usual

Brilliant written as usual.
Excellently read as usual.
A joy to listen to as usual.
Do yourself a favour and get this book.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Mr Martin Marais
  • 12-04-2019

An audio book it fitted my needs perfectly.

I found this collection of articles written by Bryson for The Mail on Sunday's Night and Day supplement during the 1990s is a better platform for him to get into “grumpy old man” mode than his Notes from a Small Island. Not being constrained by the travelling theme of Notes from a Small Island, Bryson is able to range far and wide in his discontent of modern life in America. The result is a series of very entertaining and (occasionally) informative vignettes that give an interesting perceptive of America to the foreigner of that country. I’m not sure it is the kind of book I would have the patience to read (I am a slow reader), but as an audio book it fitted my needs perfectly, aided, to a very large extent, by the very able narration of William Roberts.

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  • Andy
  • 03-04-2019

Hilarious short observations

Bill Bryson is one of my favorite authors and has been ever since I first read "A Walk in the Woods" which had me laughing out loud as I joined Bill and Katz on their trek through the forest. This book is another hilarious book from a master writer.

Each chapter is one of Mr Bryson's columns from a British newspaper back in the '90's and the observations he makes about American life for the benefit of the British public are hilarious. Although some may find these a little dated as we are going back 20 years or so, if you lived through the late '90's you will no doubt be laughing and reminiscing at the same time.

William Roberts does an amazing job of narrating Bill's books, his inflections and pace completely capture the humour and wit in the written words.

If you are a fan of Bill Bryson then this is a definite buy.