One Summer: America, 1927

Bill Bryson (A Short History of Nearly Everything, A Walk in the Woods) is back with a quirky history of 1920s America sure to please loyal readers and new fans alike.

One Summer: America, 1927 is the story of a pivotal year in American history. In the span of a few short months, Charles Lindbergh crossed the Atlantic, The Jazz Singer changed the movie industry, Babe Ruth hit an astonishing 60 home runs and "the crime of the century" (the murder of a man by his wife and her corset salesman lover) riveted the nation.

Bryson skillfully weaves together all of those stories, supplementing them with fascinating information on race relations, the presidency, Prohibition, business, Al Capone's domination of Chicago and the seeds for a stock market crash most people didn't see coming. These diverse subjects blend together to create a gripping composite history.

Bryson reads the audiobook of One Summer, and his rather unusual accent--he grew up in Iowa and lives in England--provides an interesting contrast to the more polished voices of professional narrators. His narration is clear, wryly delivering each line to perfection. The oft-changing topics make the 17 hours fly by, keeping the listener engaged all the way. Fans of Bryson's other books--or anyone who enjoys American history, baseball or aviation--will find One Summer fascinating. --Jessica Howard, blogger at Quirky Bookworm

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