Coming from Des Moines, Iowa – because, as he notes, ‘somebody had to’ – bestselling Anglo-American author Bill Bryson has transformed narrative non-fiction for a generation with his witty, laugh-aloud-funny, observational writing. He has explored far-flung places from the Australian outback to the beginning of the universe itself. This time, in his latest book, The Body: A Guide for Occupants (2019), he turns his attention inwards to explore the human body, how it functions, and its remarkable ability to heal itself.
Among today’s most prolific and best-selling nonfiction authors, Bryson has written more than twenty books about language, science, history, and his adventures traveling the globe. “Fueled by his insatiable curiosity,” writes Blinkest, “Bryson’s books are a testament to his love for knowledge and his ability to distill even the most complex topics into simple explanations anyone can understand.”
Bryson shot to prominence in the United Kingdom with Notes from a Small Island (1995), a humorous travel book that takes readers on an exploration of Great Britain, which was later adapted for television and, in a national poll, voted as the best book to represent the small island. He received further widespread recognition from A Short History of Nearly Everything (2003), which won the Aventis Prize and the Descartes Prize, and was the biggest selling nonfiction book of its decade in the United Kingdom.
Bryson has established himself as one of the world’s most beloved and prolific commentators by finding delight in the minutiae of travel and the subtleties of culture. He has chronicled everything from hiking the Appalachian Trail in the immensely popular A Walk in the Woods, later adapted into a major motion picture in 2015, to capturing the zeitgeist of the Roaring Twenties in One Summer: America 1927.
His latest, The Body: A Guide for Occupants, has been hailed by the Washington Post as one of 2020’s most notable works of nonfiction. Full of extraordinary facts and astonishing stories, The Body is a brilliant, often very funny attempt to understand the miracle of our physical and neurological make-up.