Friday, December 9, 2011

At Home

At Home, Bill Bryson
  • Why are salt and pepper are the two spices on our dinner tables, rather than for example, chilli and cinnamon?
  • Why are there 3 odd buttons on the sleeves of men's jackets?
  • How were bodies disposed of prior to pleasant lawn cemeteries and crematoriums?
  • Why do you pay for 'room and board'? What is the board?
Ever wondered how the things we take for granted today came about? So did Bill Bryson and his newest offering answers these and many other questions. Using his own home as a springboard (a 150 year old rectory in rural England) Bryson has researched the history of the home. As he works through each room in the house, we are treated to the history of how it came to be, how society changed around it and how life and ways of living have changed over the last few centuries. Full of his usual wit and storytelling skills, Bryson imparts a fantastic amount of information, all the while making it readable and entertaining.

I have long been a fan of Bryson, especially enjoying Down Under and A Short History of Nearly Everything. This one does not disappoint.