The Body, by Bill Bryson – Pocket

The Body, a guide for occupants, by Bill Bryson is a really fascinating piece of work! This is NOT your average text book about the human anatomy but is indeed a fact-filled science book – although I almost read it as fiction; for entertainment. Bill Bryson is a seemingly very curious person and he has written books on many subjects, including other books on science and world history.

In pocket format this book is over 500 pages and the letters are fairly small, so it takes a while to  read! It does not feel this way though, as it is so entertaining.

Through 23 chapters, Bryson covers the entire body (almost) and many of the interconnected systems in it in fascinating and somewhat different fashion. It starts out with a chapter called “How to build a Human”, and has separate chapters for many parts of the body as the head, brain and the skeleton, but also chapters about the body chemistry, the immune system and diseases and even death – everything covered with humour and from a somewhat different and entertaining perspective. I especially like that he sets historical records straight in many places, idenfiying the correct discoverer or inventor where popular belief might be wrong or possibly non-existent.

Illustrations are sparse and consists av two sections of photos and drawings, as is common in pocket books. It came out in 2019 and has apparently sold really well, and this I can understand!

Who is this book for?

It is for any curiously minded person who has any interest in the human body and wants to know something the don’t already know.

Who is this book NOT for?

If you are looking for a structured book going through the intricate details of the human anatomy, or if you just don’t like to laugh, this book is not for you.


It’s pocket book, so not a whole lot, about 15 USD.


An entertaining and fact-filled book looking at the human body form a somewhat different perspective. If you want to learn something new and laugh at the same time, buy it. Four point five dumbbells!

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