The Lost Continent

The Lost Continent

3.83 (42,578 ratings by Goodreads)
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Description

I come from Des Moines. Somebody had to'. And, as soon as Bill Bryson was old enough, he left. Des Moines couldn't hold him, but it did lure him back. After ten years in England, he returned to the land of his youth, and drove almost 14,000 miles in search of a mythical small town called Amalgam, the kind of trim and sunny place where the films of his youth were set. Instead, his search led him to Anywhere, USA; a lookalike strip of gas stations, motels and hamburger outlets populated by lookalike people with a penchant for synthetic fibres. Travelling around thirty-eight of the lower states - united only in their mind-numbingly dreary uniformity - he discovered a continent that was doubly lost; lost to itself because blighted by greed, pollution, mobile homes and television; lost to him because he had become a stranger in his own land. The Lost Continent is a classic of travel literature - hilariously, stomach-achingly funny, yet tinged with heartache - and the book that first staked Bill Bryson's claim as the most beloved writer of his generation.show more

Product details

  • Paperback | 384 pages
  • 124 x 196 x 24mm | 258.55g
  • Transworld Publishers Ltd
  • Black Swan
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 0552998087
  • 9780552998086
  • 22,362

Review quote

"High-spirited... hilarious" Observer "Hilarious... he can be suave, sarcastic and very funny... not your typical travel writer" Sunday Telegraph "Funny as this wonderful book is, it is also a serious indictment of the American way of life and the direction in which it is going... he is genuinely shocked, as we are, by the statistics of affluence, poverty, crime and culture that he drops in hither and thither" Irish Times "A very funny performance, littered with wonderful lines and memorable images" Literary Reviewshow more

About Bill Bryson

Bill Bryson is much loved for his bestselling travel books, from The Lost Continent to Down Under, but Notes from a Small Island has earned a particularly special place in the nation's heart (a national poll for World Book Day in 2003 voted it the book that best represents Britain). His acclaimed A Short History of Nearly Everything won the Aventis Prize for Science Books and the Descartes Science Communication Prize. He has now returned to live in the UK with his wife and family. www.billbryson.co.ukshow more

Review Text

And, as soon as Bill Bryson was old enough, he left. Des Moines couldn't hold him, but it did lure him back. After ten years in England he returned to the land of his youth, and drove almost 14,000 miles in search of a mythical town called Amalgam, the kind of smiling village where the films of his youth were set. Instead he drove through a series of horrific burgs which he renamed Smellville, Fartville, Coleslaw, Dead Squaw, Coma, Doldrum. At best his search led him to Anywhere, USA; a lookalike strip of gas stations, motels and hamburger outlets populated by obese and slow-witted hicks with a partiality for synthetic fibres. He found a continent that was doubly lost;lost to itself because blighted by greed, pollution, mobile homes and television; lost to him because he had become a foreigner in his own country.show more

Back cover copy

‘I come from Des Moines. Somebody had to’ And, as soon as Bill Bryson was old enough, he left. Des Moines couldn’t hold him, but it did lure him back. After ten years in England, he returned to the land of his youth, and drove almost 14,000 miles in search of a mythical small town called Amalgam, the kind of trim and sunny place where the films of his youth were set. Instead, his search led him to Anywhere, USA; a lookalike strip of gas stations, motels and hamburger outlets populated by lookalike people with a penchant for synthetic fibres. He discovered a continent that was doubly lost; lost to itself because blighted by greed, pollution, mobile homes and television; lost to him because he had become a stranger in his own land. Bryson’s acclaimed first success, The Lost Continent is a classic of travel literature – hilariously, stomach-achingly, funny, yet tinged with heartache – and the book that first staked Bill Bryson’s claim as the most beloved writer of his generation. ‘A very funny performance, littered with wonderful lines and memorable images’ Literary Review ‘Funny as this wonderful book is, it is also a serious indictment of the American way of life and the direction in which it is going’ Irish Times ‘High-spirited…hilarious’ Observer 9780552998086 £8.99 ebook and audio available www.billbryson.co.ukshow more

Rating details

42,578 ratings
3.83 out of 5 stars
5 28% (12,047)
4 38% (16,258)
3 25% (10,492)
2 6% (2,675)
1 3% (1,106)
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