This is a room-by-room history of the house. It is exhaustively researched and manages to cover great swaths of human history and facts I haven’t heard before. For example, did you know that before modern lighting, the total amount of light in the average home at night would be equal to the amount of light you get when you open your refrigerator door? As Bryson said, “The world at night, for much of history, was a very dark place indeed.”
A short history of nearly everthing by Bill Bryson. This book is Bryson's quest to understand everything that has happened from the Big Bang to the rise of civilisation - how we got from there, being nothing at all, to here, being us.
Again, I couldn't put this sequel down either. Full of useful and useless tidbits of information that are as mind-boggling as they are duh-simple. Like, why do brownstones have so many steps up to the front door? So horse sewage wouldn't leak into the house.