The Lost Continent: Travels in Small-Town America by Bill Bryson
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
There were definitely parts of this book that rubbed me the wrong way, and it was not my favorite of Bryson's books, but overall I really did enjoy it.
Yes, Bryson have be a bit over the top in his negativity, and can be quite a jerk. However, he easily admits this throughout, and mocks not just those around him, but himself as well. While his mockings and generalizations do sometimes show a bit more personal stereotype than I'm sure he even realizes, he does not single out any one group; rather, he shoots his negativity at everything he touches in a quite humorous way.
And frankly, I would probably be just as negative in a such a circumstance. Many would not like to accept that many of the negative experiences and places he recalled are the way they are, or that so many of them have gone downhill in past decades. The sad truth, though, is that many areas in the U.S. have given in to the very things he complains about, and lost much of the charm that a road-tripping family would have experienced in the 1950s and 60s.
Yes, a bit harsh at times. Yes, maybe a few to many generalizations. Overall though, a good read(especially if you live somewhere he found favorable, as I do :o)
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