The Body

The Body

A Guide for Occupants

eBook - 2019
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"Glorious. . .You will marvel at the brilliance and vast weirdness of your design." -- The Washington Post

Bill Bryson, bestselling author of A Short History of Nearly Everything , takes us on a head-to-toe tour of the marvel that is the human body. As addictive as it is comprehensive, this is Bryson at his very best, a must-read owner's manual for everybody.

Bill Bryson once again proves himself to be an incomparable companion as he guides us through the human body--how it functions, its remarkable ability to heal itself, and (unfortunately) the ways it can fail. Full of extraordinary facts (your body made a million red blood cells since you started reading this) and irresistible Bryson-esque anecdotes, The Body will lead you to a deeper understanding of the miracle that is life in general and you in particular. As Bill Bryson writes, "We pass our existence within this wobble of flesh and yet take it almost entirely for granted." The Body will cure that indifference with generous doses of wondrous, compulsively readable facts and information.
Publisher: [S.l.]: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group, 2019.
ISBN: 9780385539319
Branch Call Number: eBook CloudLibrary
Characteristics: 1 online resource


From Library Staff

If you like: Humor writing and science writing. A head-to-toe tour of the human body that shares anecdotal insights into its functions, ability to heal and vulnerability to disease. Recommended by NoveList for fans of Mary Roach.

From the critics

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May 15, 2020

This is typical Bill Bryson. If you are the type to read a book full of facts then you are sure to like this. Each chapter focuses on a different section or system of the body and Bryson gives you more factual and fun tidbits than you will ever remember. It was really interesting and very readable and I would definitely recommend it to people who enjoy this type of thing.

DCPL_JohnB Mar 23, 2020

A compelling look at the human body and how it works (and sometimes doesn't). Bryson fills each page with eye-opening revelations, approaching his subject with reverent curiosity. Yet a light-heartedness sparks up, here and there. Frequent asides into the lives of scientists and key figures shed light on history's unsung heroes and curiosities.

Mar 05, 2020

Lovely book, informative and funny. For me, was a fast read as I loved biology and anatomy in college. But anyone can benefit from diving into it. You'll love your skin, your thymus, and even your feet even more than you do now.

JCLS_Ashland_Kristin Mar 03, 2020

Informative and super readable. There is a lot of content about diseases, which makes now a fascinating time to be reading it!

Mar 01, 2020

A broad and quite basic overview. Easy and quick read, slightly entertaining and well researched - but not mind blowing. Those who are more than a little interested in health or general biology are unlikely to learn anything new here. It barely touches the surface on most topics. A few things are taken out of context... which I suppose is to be expected when the approach is so basic and mostly based on trivia. A good primer for adults who may have never taken biology and/or are new to health awareness.

Feb 22, 2020

Somewhere between "At Home" and "A Short History of Nearly Everything" this book dives deeply and effortlessly when warranted. Other time it moves along quickly. Bryson does not come across as a curmudgeon like he did in his last book (Little Dibbling). I have requested the audio for The Body from the library and look forward to listening to it on long runs this spring and summer.

Feb 19, 2020

Here is a narrative about how our bodies work, how we got to know what we know, and how much we don't know. The essence of Bill Bryson's writing is to make his topics entertaining and interesting and, by the end of a book, to leave the reader both a bit more knowledgeable and a lot more curious to learn more. The Body is a success on all counts.

Feb 18, 2020

Book Club - October 2020 @ Chris E

Feb 06, 2020

Great book, read Shac's comment.

Jan 24, 2020

If you’re a germophobe, go no further but if you’re the curious type – forge ahead! This is fun fact filled in the extreme body biology nerd version. The author has unique turns of phrase like when he refers to the body as “a warm wobble of flesh”. He also blows your mind relating that DNA will be recoverable 1000 years from now – what!?! This book is chock a block with the backstory on so many scientific discoveries. He shares how roadblocks to discoveries were overcome by seemingly random chance substitutions and twists of fate or how discoveries weren’t monetized because the scientist involved wasn’t interested in pursuing further research.

Ever wonder why babies sleep all the time? Why is it that only humans have a chin? Is there really suicide by lifestyle? How do the muscles in your eyeball make your iris expand or contract? There is so much yet to be discovered in this the vast unexplored region known as the body. Get your hands on this book and do some exploring!

The reader and author, Bill Bryson, is just the right person to share this book. His vocal presentation of this material is calm yet intriguing and authoritative adding to the listeners pleasure, drawing you in to hear every word.

This book has a bit of the “ewww” factor for the non-scientist but is fascinating none the less. The deeper I got into this book the more blown away I was at the information presented. It was a reminder of Biology class facts I’ve learned in school but subsequently forgotten. You will want to linger longer listening to this riveting audio book.

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Jun 30, 2020

"Your brain is you. Everything else is just plumbing and scaffolding." p 49


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