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3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (26,297 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Bill Bryson Narrator: Bill Bryson Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Abridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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After living in Britain for two decades, Bill Bryson recently moved back to the United States with his English wife and four children (he had read somewhere that nearly 3 million Americans believed they had been abducted by aliens—as he later put it, “it was clear my people needed me”). They were greeted by a new and improved America that boasts microwave pancakes, twenty-four-hour dental-floss hotlines, and the staunch conviction that ice is not a luxury item.

Delivering the brilliant comic musings that are a Bryson hallmark, I’m a Stranger Here Myself recounts his sometimes disconcerting reunion with the land of his birth. The result is a book filled with hysterical scenes of one man’s attempt to reacquaint himself with his own country, but it is also an extended if at times bemused love letter to the homeland he has returned to after twenty years away.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Frank, funny, and poignant.”

    Los Angels Times

  • “Hysterically entertaining…Bryson is the funniest of today’s humorists.”

    Cincinnati Enquirer

  • “[Bryson is] a genuinely funny fellow…The best columns are those in which the author…allows his natural impatience and intelligence out of their cages. His advice to the graduating high school students…is lovely, while his ‘Rules for Living’…are pleasingly cranky…A column about how large America is and how few people actually live there turns into an illuminating jab at United States immigration policies and should be required reading for politicians.”

    New York Times Book Review

  • “Why are [Bryson’s books] so dazzlingly good? The simple answer: Bryson is funny…intelligent, witty, and sensitive to the absurd…Perhaps you are familiar with a writer that has Bryson’s mastery of language, wit, fascination with history and statistics, or impeccable comic timing (though if you are, please tell me—I’ve been looking for books that make me laugh like this for years).”

    Chicago Tribune

  • “A cross between de Tocqueville and Dave Barry, Bryson writes about today’s America in a way that’s both trenchantly observant and pound-on-the-floor, snort-root-beer-out-of-your-nose funny.”

    San Francisco Examiner

  • “Bryson’s marvelous sense of humor and wide-ranging curiosity let us share his delight at being a stranger in a truly strange land.”

    Seattle Times/Post-Intelligencer

  • “[Bryson] can find the humor in a bag of hammers and, often enough, the lesson too…Truly and beguilingly, if you are a jaded resident of the USA, Bryson can rekindle your wonder and delight in the life and land around you.”

    Kirkus Reviews

  • “His immense talent as an observer and a humorist [makes] these essays worthwhile reading no matter what the context…Bryson once again proves that he is one of the foremost travel writers of our time.”

    Lexington Herald-Leader

  • “Bryson is a wry, funny writer…who could write about a sack of tenpenny nails and make it sound amusing…You’ll delight in Bryson’s waggish perspective.”

    Tampa Tribune

  • “A smashing collection of funny, self-deprecating, sometimes ironic…short essays…Bryson is a delightful writer and storyteller…There’s just enough of Jonathan Swift to give most of these commentaries a special, unique resonance.”

    The State

Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Micah | 2/17/2014

    " Loved listening to this book. Actually, I did learn something from it: after listening to it I always put my hot water heater to "vacation" when we went away. We have a new hot water heater that does not have a "vacation" setting, but now we just turn it off when we are away. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Lili | 2/14/2014

    " Very funny. I especially liked the fact that the book is very personal. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Peter Ritchie | 2/9/2014

    " Highly entertaining read. Though the last few chapters lose their way somewhat. I took a lot of anecdotes away from it and still remember them after having read it two years ago! Great book border line 4 stars because of those last few chapters. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Joanne | 2/8/2014

    " Very amusing. I would simply hate to be within Bryson's purview when he's in writing mode because he would likely spear and fry me... to the great amusement of the next reader. I'd probably read and laugh myself he's so good at description and anecdote. The man is funny. If you're uber right wing and not inclined to laugh at yourself, don't read this. Otherwise, let your hair down and enjoy. "

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