I have never read any of Bill Bryson's books but At Home appealed to me. I am currently listening to the Audio edition - all 14 CDs of it, unabridged - read by the man himself. I'm on disc 2 and it's really interesting - just the sort of thing I like. It's packed full of fascinating details. He sets out to give a potted history of houses and their contents by reference to his own house - a Norfolk rectory in a village which he doesn't name.
So far he's talked about clergyman in the 18th and 19th century - I hadn't realised how many of them had made inventions or discoveries in all fields of human endeavour. Then he's covered the Great Exhibition and all its interesting statistics. Only 25 people arrested for crimes out of 5 million visitors. The Chartists and their struggle for universal manhood suffrage and the design and construction of the Crystal Palace and its subsequent history.
There are so many interesting snippets that you immediately want to know about them and I suspect you really need to read it as an e-book so that you can look up more information about the things he mentions. I really recommend it to anyone who likes information and interesting and eccentric people.