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The Palace Under the Alps, and Over 200 Other Unusual, Unspoiled, and Infrequently Visited Spots in 16 European Countries

3.24  ·  Rating Details ·  45 Ratings  ·  12 Reviews
Hardcover, 256 pages
Published January 1st 1985 by Distributed by St. Martin's Press
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Becky
Jan 28, 2013 Becky rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A book I am very sad is out of print (I had to wait almost a year to get it from my library, and the cheapest copy I saw online was $65). It may be out of date, but the information is wonderful. I would love it if this were reprinted (even if not updated) in a digital copy! I would like to own it someday as well...
Zazzu
Nov 21, 2012 Zazzu rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2012-books
I agree with other reviews--this is not Bryson's best work, but it's worth reading if you like him or want a few ideas for off the path travel. I agree though...this worthwhile book should be updated and have pictures. Pack your bags Mr. Bryson...off you go!
Amy
Aug 27, 2011 Amy rated it really liked it
Would love to see this book updated - its 25 years old, so not sure how many of the things are still in existence.
Keri
Nov 17, 2013 Keri rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This isn't a travel book like any of Bill Bryson's others. You won't find a narrative here of his travels through Europe or anything like that. It's not going to read like "A Walk in the Woods" or "Notes From a Small Island", so don't be prepared for 200+ pages of fully immersive reading.

This book describes in somewhat brief paragraphs "200 unusual, unspoiled, and infrequently visited spots in 16 European countries", it's right there on the cover. He doesn't go into verbose detail about each pla
...more
Kristin
I see that a lot of people say this isn't Bryson's best, and I'd say that's true. However, the format is not the same as any of his other books either, and that should be taken into consideration. It's also frustrating as a travel book, because it has zero pictures. Still, Bryson paints a picture with words of all these interesting places and makes you want to experience them for yourself. I felt like I was taking a little vacation not just in space, but in time. (West Germany? Let's go!) I do ...more
Travis
Jun 06, 2013 Travis rated it it was ok
This is Bryson's first travel book and lacks the narrative charm of his later work. Each of the entries are very short and have yet to be suffused with his trademark humor and wit. This book is (rightfully) out-of-print. It's not bad by any means, and acts as a perfectly serviceable travel book. Although there are sparks of his future voice, all but the most diehard Bryson fans can safely skip this one.
Lori Foley
Aug 26, 2016 Lori Foley rated it liked it
This is a true travel guide, unlike the other books I've read by Bill Bryson that are travel stories. You can get a taste of his humor, but it is far more subdued, and his sarcasm is mostly completely absent. I made a few notes, since I had to borrow the book from the library (no longer in print). I'm anxious to see how many of these places still exist - and to visit a few that do!
Anthony Lara
Mar 10, 2014 Anthony Lara rated it it was amazing
This is a wonderful amalgam of European travel. Although Bryson doesn't yet display his Walk in the Woods style frankness, he includes bits of comedy and construes a literary world resplendently brilliant.
Rebecca
Apr 27, 2009 Rebecca rated it it was ok
A travel book with no pictures???? Some interesting places to see, more I'm still not inclined to visit. The title made it seem like they would all be cool places. They're not. But still, interesting read for the ones that are truly interesting.
Jackie Harrison-jewell
Jul 29, 2016 Jackie Harrison-jewell rated it it was ok
Shelves: history, humor
Not one of Bill's best, but then again, it's pretty old so he probably was just acquiring his writer's chops. I have to admit that I really liked the little blurb about Lichtenstein.
Dina P.
Dec 29, 2015 Dina P. rated it it was amazing
It was written in the 80's, so I think some of the infrequently visited spots now has become frequently visited ones. But, still it's Bill Bryson, and it gives us ideas on where to go next.
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William McGuire "Bill" Bryson, OBE, FRS

Bill Bryson was born in Des Moines, Iowa, in 1951. He settled in England in 1977, and worked in journalism until he became a full time writer. He lived for many years with his English wife and four children in North Yorkshire. He and his family then moved to New Hampshire in America for a few years, but they have now returned to live in the UK.

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