Bryson will set you right in this canter through one summer of one year that—once you’ve turned the final page—will seem more critical to American history than you might have reckoned before… [He] is a master of the sidelong, a man who can turn obscurity into hilarity with seemingly effortless charm—and One Summer is an entertaining addition to a body of work that is at its best when it celebrates the unexpected and the obscure… This is a jolly jalopy ride of a book; Bryson runs down the byways of American history and finds diversion in every roadside stop.
Bryson is a marvelous historian, not only exhaustively accurate, but highly entertaining. If you avoid textbook histories because they seem too dry, pick up One Summer, or any other of Mr. Bryson's books. They are intelligent delights.
Liz Smith - Huffington Post
Bryson covers [1027 historical events] in characteristically sparkling prose. These notable happenings are worth relating and recalling, but others have done so, and more authoritatively and fully. Here, there’s not much connection between them; a string of coincidents (and there are many of those each day) hardly justify a book. So this isn’t history, nor is it really a story with a start, finish, and thematic spine. No analysis, only narrative—it’s diverting but slight.
The summer of 1927 offers the prolific Bryson a prepared canvas on which to paint a narrative of well-known, unknown, and little-known events and personalities of the Twenties.... The book's strength is in showing the overlap of significant events and the interaction of personalities. But the author's approach keeps the reader from gaining a real sense of the landscape; this is more a spatter painting. —Charles K. Piehl, Minnesota State Univ., Mankato
(Starred review.) Bryson’s inimitable wit and exuberance are on full display in this wide-ranging look at the major events in an exciting summer in America. Bryson makes fascinating interconnections...[and] offers delicious detail and breathtaking suspense about events whose outcomes are already known. A glorious look at one summer in America. —Vanessa Bush
A popular chronicler of life and lore vividly charts a particularly pivotal season in American history. Bryson reanimates the events and principal players across five key months in 1927.... While he may be an expatriate residing in England, Bryson's American pride saturates this rewarding book. A distinctively drawn time capsule from a definitive epoch.
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