In his book, Notes From A Small Island, Bryson gives the readers his insights of the British life. Before moving back to his native land, America, with his family, Bryson took a tour of England. He reflects on the many different facets of the English way of life. He cheerfully narrates intriguing and funny anecdotes about the British land. The book also ponders over the many endearing qualities of the Britishers. He visits popular places like London and Blackpool, and goes on to explore less-known towns. He uses the public transport to travel and explore many modern cities and historic landmarks. The book offers a careful look into what makes the Britishers distinctive. Bryson pokes fun at the quirks of the British culture and the British people, but also presents its charming side.
Bryson notes that there are 445,000 historical buildings which are listed, 1,500,000 acres of common land, 12,000 churches of the medieval period and 600,000 archaeological sites. He presents his views on the architecture, the food, queuing, puddings, and hedgerows. Bryson also humorously describes the different characters that he meets on his journey. In his travelogue, he interweaves his own life story, his marriage and jobs. He notes the changes that Britain has undergone and the changes he finds. He watches the scenery, the services, the people, the restaurants, and comments on the weather. Notes From A Small Island has remained a bestseller since its publication in 1995. In the World Book Day poll of 2003, the book was voted by the BBC Radio 4 listeners as the book which best represented Britain. In 1998, the book was adapted into a series by Carlton Television. An audio book format has also been made.