>> Monday, June 2, 2008
Genre: Non-Fiction (sort of – a memoir with a healthy dose of imagination a la A Christmas Story)
Publication Date: 2006
Challenges: Non-Fiction Five #4
I have a hard time classifying this one as a strict non-fiction memoir. There’s a lot of childlike imagination and hyperbole instilled in it. It certainly did not keep me from enjoying the book, though. I giggled my way through this and continually read bits and pieces to The Hubster. I’m a few years younger than Bryson, but there was a lot of what he described about growing up in 1950’s Iowa that I also experienced growing up in 1960’s Oregon.
His vivid imagination and writing style puts the reader right in the mind of a kid who is convinced, (after reading the comic books in the kiddie corral at the grocery store) that either he or his parents are really from another planet and that his true identity is The Thunderbolt Kid. After all, why else would there be an old football jersey with a lightning bolt on it in the basement?
I laughed so hard at the description of electric football that I thought I was never going to regain my composure and I still get the giggles when I think about it. I’m keeping this book out from the library and have told The Hubster that he has to read it (there are actually a few parts that I resisted reading to him already).
I really enjoyed this book. It’s a nice look back at a simpler time that probably wasn’t really so much simpler, just another time. Through the eyes of an imaginative child, it’s mostly just fun with a bit of nostalgia and history thrown in.