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Osa and Martin: For the Love of Adventure
by Kelly Enright (Goodreads Author)
The inspiring story of the legendary couple whose wildlife films transformed America’s perceptions of exotic places.
Hardcover, 240 pages
Published September 1st 2011 by Lyons Press
(first published August 16th 2011)
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Jul 07, 2012 Stacia rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: those who like adventure stories, travel narratives, a little slice of Americana (film history)
This is a fairly interesting biography of Osa & Martin Johnson (mainly set from the 1910s to the 1940s), who were known/wildly popular for their photos & films of Africa (& the South Pacific). In addition to their photos, films, lecture circuits, the Johnsons also provided specimens/dioramas used in natural history museums & brought animals to various zoos in the US. Prior to reading this, I had never really thought about the person/people behind the stuffed animal exhibits in mu ...more
I think the life of Osa and Martin is fascinating, and I wish that I have heard of them more before I randomly bought this book in Disney World, lol! The problem with this book is that to me it seems more like a summary of Osa's autobiography then an interesting read in of itself. I haven't read "I Married Adventure," but I want to, but that is just the feeling I get. Also the book has really long chapters and that is just a personal pet peeve.
I was disappointed in this book. Having spent the last few weeks reading Osa Johnson's own autobiographical works, this just seemed like a very compressed version of her adventures. I was looking for more insight and analysis, a historian's take on Osa and Martin. This only really shows up in the intro and the last chapter. Enright touches on the Johnsons' evolving conservation ethic, but it's just a tease, not a sustained original take or argument on the matter. I'd read the intro and last chap ...more
This was a really fun one to discover! Went to hear this local author several months ago with my parents at the downtown KC library where she gave a presentation about her research and this unique couple that has all but been forgotten. They were really ahead of their time, especially Osa herself, traveling to Africa with her husband and documenting the wildlife. At one point she was voted "best dressed" woman of the year. Not bad for a Kansas native from a small town.
Because I was not particularly familiar with the lives and contributions of Osa and Martin Johnson, I enjoyed reading about their exploits. Fun to learn about famous Kansans. Small World Gallery carries this book because it is part of the Kansas Notable Book collection.
Kelly Enright is the author of Maximum of Wilderness: The Jungle in the American Imagination, Osa and Martin: For the Love of Adventure, America’s Natural Places: Rocky Mountains and Great Plains, and Rhinoceros. Her work focuses on portrayals of nature in American culture, human-animal relationships, museums, and travels. Kelly’s articles have appeared in National Geographic, Environmental Histor ...moreMore about Kelly Enright...