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At home : a short history of private life

Bryson, Bill

Bill Bryson's At Home is a fascinating history of the house, room by room. With his droll humor and a gift for unearthing the extraordinary stories behind the seemingly commonplace, Bryson reveals how everyday items—things like ice, cookbooks, glass windows, and even salt and pepper—transformed the way people lived, and how houses evolved around these new commodities. Fun and informative, this book is full of serendipitous surprises, including a number of charming etymologies of words like "curfew" and "limelight."

By Robert Roy Mendenhall
Submitted: November 9, 2010