The Road to Little Dribbling
By Bill Bryson
Doubleday Books, Hardcover, 9780385539289, January 2016 400pp.
The Short of It:
Bryson’s long-awaited follow-up to Notes from a Small Island. As funny as Bryson can be, I was disappointed with this one.
The Rest of It:
Twenty years ago, Bryson took his readers on a farewell trip through England. That hilarious adventure was documented in Notes from a Small Island. He made the trip before moving his family to the US and now, years later was encouraged to make a return visit to some of those places even though he has since moved back to the UK.
Twenty years can change a person’s perspective and that is the case here. Bryson is a wonderful writer and has been a fave of mine for a very long time. He won me over with A Walk in the Woods and I’ve read many of his books over the last ten years; no matter the subject. The man can write.
This one comes off as somewhat hostile.
He’s still funny but all of his adventures are told with a slightly superior “I’m better than you” edge which made me a little uncomfortable. Clearly, his patience has been tested one too many times while writing this one. He has no tolerance for twits or stupid questions. I get it. The man is not perfect and I, too, have little patience for complete dolts, but over and over with the unkind comments became a little laborious to read. Many of the people he encounters anger him in some way. Or, he just chose to highlight those instances since they stuck out for him. Not sure.
In the end, this wasn’t the escape read I was hoping for but he’s still one of my favorite writers and I can’t wait to see what he comes up with next.
Source: Review copy provided by the publisher.
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