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The Road to Little Dribbling: More Notes From a Small Island by [Bryson, Bill]
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The Road to Little Dribbling: More Notes From a Small Island Kindle Edition

4.4 out of 5 stars 59 customer reviews

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Review

Praise for The Road to Little Dribbling:

"Although he's now entering what he fondly calls his 'dotage,' the 64-year-old Bryson seems merely to have sharpened both his charms and his crotchets. As the title of The Road to Little Dribbling suggests, he remains devoted to Britain's eccentric place names as well as its eccentric pastimes." 
—Alida Becker, The New York Times Book Review

"[Y]ou could hardly ask for a better guide to Great Britain than Bill Bryson.  Bryson’s new book is in most ways a worthy successor and sequel to his classic Notes From A Small Island. Like its predecessor, The Road to Little Dribbling is a travel memoir, combining adventures and observations from his travels around the island nation with recounting of his life there, off and mostly on, over the last four decades.  Bryson is such a good writer that even if you don’t especially go in for travel books, he makes reading this book worthwhile."
—Nancy Klingener, Miami Herald

"...Bryson’s capacity for wonder at the beauty of his adopted homeland seems to have only grown with time.... Britain is still his home four decades later, a period in which he went from lowly scribe at small-town British papers to best-selling travel writer. But he retains an outsider’s appreciation for a country that first struck him as 'wholly strange ... and yet somehow marvelous.”
—Griff Witte, Washington Post

“Such a pleasure to once again travel the lanes and walking paths of Britain in the company of Bill Bryson! He’s a little older now, and not necessarily wiser, but he’s as delightful and irascible a guide as anyone could ever wish to have, as he rediscovers this somewhat careworn land and finds it as endearing (mostly) as ever. It’s a rare book that will make me laugh out loud. This one did, over and over.”
—Erik Larson, author of Dead Wake and The Devil in the White City

"There’s a whole lot of “went to a charming little village named Bloke-on-Weed, had a look around, a cupof tea, and moved on” in Bryson’s most recent toddle around Britain. Writing 20 years after his bestselling Notes from a Small Island, Bryson concocts another trip through his homeland of 40 years bydetermining the longest distance one could travel in Britain in a straight line... This being Bryson, one chuckles every couple of pages, of course, saying, 'yup, that sounds about right,' to his curmudgeonly commentary on everything from excess traffic and litter to rude sales clerks. One also feels the thrum of wanderlust as Bryson encounters another gem of a town or pip of a pub. And therein lies the charm of armchair traveling with Bryson. He clearly adores his adopted country. There are no better views, finer hikes, more glorious castles, or statelier grounds than the ones he finds, and Bryson takes readers on a lark of a walk across this small island with megamagnetism."
—Booklist, starred review

"Fans should expect to chuckle, snort, snigger, grunt, laugh out loud and shake with recognition…a clotted cream and homemade jam scone of a treat."
—Sunday Times

"At its best as the history of a love affair, the very special relationship between Bryson and Britain. We remain lucky to have him."
—Matthew Engel, Financial Times

"Is it the funniest travel book I’ve read all year? Of course it is."
—Daily Telegraph
 
"We have a tradition in this country of literary teddy bears—John Betjeman and Alan Bennett among them—whose cutting critiques of the absurdities and hypocrisies of the British people are carried out with such wit and good humour that they become national treasures. Bill Bryson is American but is now firmly established in the British teddy bear pantheon... The fact that this wonderful writer can unerringly catalogue all our faults and is still happy to put up with us should make every British reader’s chest swell with pride."
—Jake Kerridge, Sunday Express
 
"The truly great thing about Bryson is that he really cares and is insanely curious... Reading his work is like going on holiday with the members of Monty Python."
—Chris Taylor, Mashable
 
"There were moments when I snorted out loud with laughter while reading this book in public... He can be as gloriously silly as ever."
—The London Times
 
"The observation, the wit, the geniality of Bryson’s inimitable words illuminate ever chapter."
—Terry Wogan, Irish Times
 
"Everybody loves Bill Bryson, don’t they? He’s clever, witty, entertaining, a great companion... his research is on show here, producing insight, wisdom and startling nuggets of information... Bill Bryson and his new book are the dog’s bollocks."
—Independent on Sunday
 
"Stuffed with eye-opening facts and statistics..... Bryson's charm and wit continue to float off the page....Recognising oneself is part of the pleasure of reading Bryson's mostly affable rants about Britain and Britishness." 
—Daily Mail

"His millions of readers will probably enjoy this just as much as its predecessor."
—Observer

"We go to him less for insights—though there are plenty of these—and more for the pleasure of his company. And he can be very funny indeed. Almost every page has a line worth quoting."
—Glasgow Herald

"At last, Bill Bryson has got back to what he does best—penning travel books that educate, inform and will have you laughing out loud... I was chuckling away by page four and soaking up his historic facts to impress my mates with. Sure to be a bestseller."
—Sun

"Bryson has no equal. He combines the charm and humour of Michael Palin with the cantankerousness of Victor Meldrew and the result is a benign intolerance that makes for a gloriously funny read."
—Daily Express


From the Hardcover edition.

Product Description

Bill Bryson returns to his internationally beloved topic, Britain, with his first travel book in fifteen years.

In 1995, Bill Bryson went on a trip around Britain to celebrate the green and kindly island that had become his home. The hilarious book he wrote about that journey, Notes from a Small Island, became one of the most loved books of recent decades.
    Now, in this hotly anticipated new travel book, his first in fifteen years and sure to be greeted as the funniest book of the decade, Bryson sets out on a brand-new journey, on a route he dubs the Bryson Line, from Bognor Regis on the south coast to Cape Wrath on the northernmost tip of Scotland.
    Once again, he will guide us through all that's best and worst about Britain today--while doing that incredibly rare thing of making us laugh out loud in public.

Product Details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 3526 KB
  • Print Length: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Doubleday Canada (Oct. 13 2015)
  • Sold by: Random House Canada, Incorp.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00YKO2T6U
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars 59 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #3,048 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Vlad Thelad TOP 1000 REVIEWER on March 2 2016
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Almost 20 years ago, the day I left England on route to the country I subsequently chose as mine, I had a last minute lunch at Heathrow airport with my dear friend Jon who was returning from holidays. He handed me as a parting gift the book he had just read. By the time I landed at the other side of the Atlantic, I had finished Bill Bryson’s “Notes from a Small Island.” I laughed, I cried, I loved it. It was a wonderful take from an outsider-become-insider on all the idiosyncrasies that define Britishness, and why we love them. Fast-forward nearly 20 years, and Bryson has done it again. Britain has changed, and so has the author, but the love, the humour, and the incisiveness of his commentary are all there. I, who have undoubtedly also changed yet remain an incurable anglophile, enjoyed “The Road to Little Dribbling” every bit as much as I did “Notes.” I recommend them both wholeheartedly.
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Bill Bryson is one of the very few authors whose books I'll read without even glancing at the subject matter. Years ago I read "Notes from a Small Island", and this worthy follow-up is highly enjoyable. It's full of the usual Bryson treasure of personal anecdotes funny enough to make me shout with laughter, and interesting historical facts, many about places in the UK that I've visited, even including "London, France".
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This is a delightful book and all Anglophiles will most certainly enjoy it. I am British by birth and spent 71 of my 95 years in Britain. This may make me sound like a fuddy-duddy although I hope not. Bill Bryson is for all ages of reader. He has a splendid quirky style of writing and his vocabulary is impressive and original. The places he describes come vividly to life and he expresses himself with some decidedly "salty" opinions on the scenery of Britain and its inhabitants. Clearly he loves Britain and he enjoys what he is doing. I wish that I were 20 years younger and could return to Britain to follow in his footsteps. I recommend this book wholeheartedly to all would-be travellers. It provides hours of absorbing reading..
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This feels more like a collection of essays and anecdotes than an account of a continuous journey. It is still lovely and lucid and light hearted of course - I doubt Bryson could be otherwise. There have been complaints that Bryson has gotten grumpy and misanthropic and what have you, but I rather enjoyed his whining. After reading this I was gifted a contemporary retracing of Bryson's Notes from a Small Island by a young English author. It's called Dear Bill Bryson and describes itself as an irreverent homage. I was rather taken by it. I forget the author's name. On something of a run, I will now read English Journey by JB Priestley, and then maybe something on Canada!

Dear Bill Bryson: Footnotes from a Small Island

English Journey
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By Ian Gordon Malcomson HALL OF FAMETOP 50 REVIEWER on May 20 2016
Format: Kindle Edition
In this colorfully feisty and sometimes salty travelogue, Bryson reminds his readers that the latest edition of his adopted home of Merry-old England is not so merry anymore. Playing the role of the 'return of the native', Bryson revisits Albion to check on the locals and revive fond memories. This extensive tramp around the country in search of the past, while nostalgically inspired, quickly becomes a journey laden with disappointment and regret. During a thirty-five year hiatus, something has happened to Bryson's fabled kingdom by the sea. Favourite restaurants, attention to manners, respect for grammar, old buildings, and modes of transportation seem to have disappeared as the country modernizes. In their place appears a slackness, shabbiness and indifference to the achievements of the past. Has Britain willfully turned philistine in its effort to modernize? Bryson thinks not: as he shows here a typical English response to megacultural and social change is to carry on doing things the time-honored, quaint way. Bryson has a mixture of fun and frustration trying to understand a rather baffling national road system, a popular penchant for fossils and sea-cliffs, a fascination for local railways, and a desire to preserve the past. Obviously, the English, as Bryson sees it, are not so concerned about what has disappeared as much as what remains. At the end of the day, Stonehenge may look a tad more commercialized; Brighton, less glittering; and caravan holidays less glamorous, but life still goes on. While the new England that now rises to assail Bryson's sensibilities has become the land of cheap foreign hols, massive motorways, huge airports on the edge of megacities, and countless miles of littered beach, it still offers the sojourner a decent chance to contemplate the past, whether it be in a tea shop, museum, or a pub. All parts of England get a decent going over here.
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It's Bill Bryson. Of course you must read this. He's a little older and grumpier, but so am I. :) But I laughed out loud. A lot. His love of Britain stands out above his frustration. But the social commentary is important. We could all use better manners, more happiness over simple things, more time spent appreciating where we are from, and for Pete's sake, stop littering!
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Bill seems to have gotten decidedly grumpy since his first look at the British Isles and some of his observations tend to be repetitive and just a little petty. Still, he makes the reader laugh out loud more than enough times to make the read worth the time. Describing the iconic British meat pie as "boiled cartilage and phlegm" is vintage Bryson.
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