Tag: Experiences

Bill Bryson – The Road to Little Dribbling | Review

Title: The Road to Little Dribbling

Author: Bill Bryson

Type: Non-Fiction

Page Count: 390

Rating: 4/5

This book is subtitled More Notes from a Small Island, and so as you can expect, it’s pretty much the natural and spiritual sequel to Notes from a Small Island. Arguably Bryson’s most successful book, that one charted his experiences as an American who’d moved to the United Kingdom and then spent a bunch of time travelling around it.

Since then, he’d moved to America and then presumably back to the UK again. It’s kind of hard to tell with Bryson sometimes because I don’t necessarily read his books in publication order and it’s my understanding that he’s headed backwards and forwards here and there. The good news is that I enjoy him most when he’s writing about the UK, possibly only because I live there and so it’s easy for me to picture the things that he’s writing about.

I also think that Bryson has continued to mature as a writer over the years. It’s not that his style has changed, but he has tightened it up a little bit and I think this book benefits because of it. He’s perfected the art of narrative non-fiction and has the knack of writing super engaging informational books on pretty much any topic he tries his hand at.

I will admit that from time to time I’ve found that Bryson’s humour can grate on me, but that’s okay because it wasn’t a problem here. I think it really depends upon his headspace at the time, because when he came across as petty and vindictive, he was having a pretty tough time of things while travelling across Europe.

Overall then, I enjoyed reading this one and would definitely recommend it if you’re a fan of Bryson’s travel writing and stuff. If you’re new to him, though, I’d probably go for Notes from a Small Island to begin with, although this wouldn’t be a bad place to turn to second. And so all in all, it’s a cracking book and I enjoyed it a lot, despite it being my second Bill Bryson book in as many weeks. He hasn’t started to get old yet, at least if we’re talking about my opinion of his books. Looking forward to more!

Learn more about The Road to Little Dribbling.

 


Charles Bukowski – Come On In! | Review

Title: Come On In!

Author: Charles Bukowski

Type: Poetry

Page Count/Review Word Count: 288

Rating: 4*/5

 

Charles Bukowski - Come On In!

Charles Bukowski – Come On In!

 

This book is one of several collections that Charles Bukowski prepared to be published after his death, and so if you’ve read any of his work before then you’ll know roughly what to expect. But what’s interesting is that the work here is more introspective than usual, and it gives you an insight into a different side of him as he came to terms with old age and mortality.

Of course, there’s plenty of Bukowski’s wisdom along the way, and the whole book is eminently quotable. It even ends on the line “drink from the well of your self and begin again”, which I’ve seen online a bunch of times. That’s the thing with his work – it sums up life in a way that few other writers have been able to accomplish, and even if you can’t directly relate with the experiences that he talks about, you can damn well relate to the emotion.

Come On In! also has the benefit of being aesthetically pleasing – it looks great whether it’s in your hands or on your bookshelf. It’s produced with a high quality print on the inside and out, and Bukowski’s unique style plays with line breaks in a way that makes it both easy to read, quick to whizz through and attractive on the page. He’s the kind of writer who can make popping zits sound beautiful, although you’re more likely to find a whore or a horse race.

So step right up and Come On In! – whether you’re an established fan or whether you’re new to Bukowski’s work, this is a great place to start.

 

Charles Bukowski

Charles Bukowski

 

Click here to buy Come On In!.

 


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