I discovered Bill Buford having watching Fat Man in a White Hat, a seemingly-truncated BBC4 series broadcast earlier this year. It featured a passionate and highly-articulate American guy who'd thrown in his job and moved his family to France to learn all about being a French chef. I enjoyed the two episodes and looked the guy up to find more. Turns out he's an amazingly good writer in the headlong experiential gonzo style.
Next I read his account of English football hooliganism, Among the Thugs, which is slightly less accomplished but still an excellent experience. Buford has a great way of describing the scene and everything he experiences in it that places you right in the action. His conclusion about football hooligans is depressing, but likely very true. His descriptions of life in English terraces pre-Hillsborough are enlightening.