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A Walk in the Woods: Rediscovering America on the Appalachian Trail (original 1997; edition 2006)

by Bill Bryson

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11,841351224 (4.01)497
Member:Cruiseheimers
Title:A Walk in the Woods: Rediscovering America on the Appalachian Trail
Authors:Bill Bryson
Info:Anchor (2006), Edition: 2nd, Mass Market Paperback, 397 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:*****
Tags:light reading

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A Walk in the Woods: Rediscovering America on the Appalachian Trail by Bill Bryson (1997)

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English (345)  German (3)  Dutch (3)  French (1)  All languages (352)
Showing 1-5 of 345 (next | show all)
Great read!

Seldom have I raced through a book at such a high pace. Not only was it funny as hell, but it also was really light, which I look for often but hardly ever find in books.

I recommend this fully to anyone who likes nature, history and a good deal of humor of every kind.
  bartt95 | Apr 10, 2016 |
really enjoyed this. the author, Bill Bryson, and a friend, Stephen Katz, age 44, decide to walk the Appalachian Trail. The trial is approximately 2200 miles from Georgia to Maine. They only end up hiking 870 miles - still a good accomplishment for two men out of shape. The author also talks about a variety of subjects like the loss of the chestnut tree, the park service, how the trail was created and of course, hiking the trail. Bryson has a good sense of humor.
  taurus27 | Apr 7, 2016 |
I ordered the audio version of this book when I saw it was going to be made into a movie. The audio is narrated by Bryson and his dry sense of humor comes through with a sharp swipes.

I have read this book several times and wanted to check out the audio version. It is still one of my favorite reads and I think it gets funnier with age. I am also still inspired to one day hike the AT. I have been on several day hikes when I was living in Georgia and when I visited TN. ( )
  yvonne.sevignykaiser | Apr 2, 2016 |
Read this for a book group in Omaha and so glad I did this book is funny, inspirational as well as informative. The author takes you on his trip to find his way after turning forty to have one big adventure and test his own endurance. Once done you want to head to REI and buy your gear and start your own adventure on the trail.

His adventure would not have been complete with-out his friend Katz along who has put on a few pounds since their last backpacking adventure through Europe after college.

Bryson has dry wit down to a tee he has you laughing as he is making his equipment purchases at REI type store and on the trail as they are worried they may run into a bear.

This may be my first read through the book but it will not be my last this is one you can pick up again and again. ( )
  yvonne.sevignykaiser | Apr 2, 2016 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Walking, in the terms of a long exercise with a pack on your back and sleeping in a tent, has sometimes appealed to me. Not enough that I extended my own modest walks to an overnight stay, but it did kind of sound like something I could do. After reading this book, I have changed my mind. I loved reading about their adventures and the people they met, but it sounded rather miserable. But mostly funny. This is my first book by Bryson, but not my last. ( )
  cmbohn | Mar 27, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 345 (next | show all)
Bryson's breezy, self-mocking tone may turn off readers who hanker for another ''Into Thin Air'' or ''Seven Years in Tibet.'' Others, however, may find themselves turning the pages with increasing amusement and anticipation as they discover that they're in the hands of a satirist of the first rank, one who writes (and walks) with Chaucerian brio.
 
[Bryson] was often exhausted, his ''brain like a balloon tethered with string, accompanying but not actually part of the body below.'' The reader, by contrast, is rarely anything but exhilarated. And you don't have to take a step.
 

» Add other authors (5 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Bill Brysonprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Goddijn, ServaasTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Roberts, WilliamNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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To Katz,
of course.
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Not long after I moved with my family to a small town in New Hampshire I happened upon a path that vanished into a wood on the edge of town.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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ISBN 0552152153 refers to the abridged version. Please do not combine with unabridged works.
ISBN 0-553-45592-3 and 978-0-553-45592-2 refer to the abridged audiobook version. Please do not combine with unabridged works.
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0307279464, Mass Market Paperback)

Your initial reaction to Bill Bryson's reading of A Walk in the Woods may well be "Egads! What a bore!" But by sentence three or four, his clearly articulated, slightly adenoidal, British/American-accented speech pattern begins to grow on you and becomes quite engaging. You immediately get a hint of the humor that lies ahead, such as one of the innumerable reasons he longed to walk as many of the 2,100 miles of the Appalachian Trail as he could. "It would get me fit after years of waddlesome sloth" is delivered with glorious deadpan flair. By the time our storyteller recounts his trip to the Dartmouth Co-op, suffering serious sticker shock over equipment prices, you'll be hooked.

When Bryson speaks for the many Americans he encounters along the way--in various shops, restaurants, airports, and along the trail--he launches into his American accent, which is whiny and full of hard r's. And his southern intonations are a hoot. He's even got a special voice used exclusively when speaking for his somewhat surprising trail partner, Katz. In the 25 years since their school days together, Katz has put on quite a bit of weight. In fact, "he brought to mind Orson Welles after a very bad night. He was limping a little and breathing harder than one ought to after a walk of 20 yards." Katz often speaks in monosyllables, and Bryson brings his limited vocabulary humorously to life. One of Katz's more memorable utterings is "flung," as in flung most of his provisions over the cliff because they were too heavy to carry any farther.

The author has thoroughly researched the history and the making of the Appalachian Trail. Bryson describes the destruction of many parts of the forest and warns of the continuing perils (both natural and man-made) the Trail faces. He speaks of the natural beauty and splendor as he and Katz pass through, and he recalls clearly the serious dangers the two face during their time together on the trail. So, A Walk in the Woods is not simply an out-of-shape, middle-aged man's desire to prove that he can still accomplish a major physical task; it's also a plea for the conservation of America's last wilderness. Bryson's telling is a knee-slapping, laugh-out-loud funny trek through the woods, with a touch of science and history thrown in for good measure. (Running time: 360 minutes, four cassettes) --Colleen Preston

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:09:30 -0400)

(see all 7 descriptions)

Traces the author's adventurous trek along the Appalachian Trail past its natural pleasures, human eccentrics, and offbeat comforts.

(summary from another edition)

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