Yes, I actually own all 24 of the Tarzan books. I have decided to have a fun jaunt thru the books, and count up the number of lost civilizations, lostYes, I actually own all 24 of the Tarzan books. I have decided to have a fun jaunt thru the books, and count up the number of lost civilizations, lost princesses or pagan priestesses that Tarzan encounters. Wish me luck!
The first two books are actually fairly good. Edgar Rice Burroughs started turning out Tarzan book-fodder as he needed money and could always make something from a Tarzan book, but he realized they were pretty poor. The initial concept, however, is intriguing and a worthwhile story. It should be noted that the real Tarzan from the book bears very little resemblance to the movies or TV series about Tarzan. ...more
Enjoyed re-reading this book after forgetting it probably for 20 years. Even though I remembered "who-done-it", the developing relationship and friendEnjoyed re-reading this book after forgetting it probably for 20 years. Even though I remembered "who-done-it", the developing relationship and friendship between Elijah and Daneel is fun to watch, as well as being re-introduced to the three laws of Robotics....more
An interesting mix of genres (Roman mythology with science fiction), this dystopian book would have a been more enjoyable to me if it had not been soAn interesting mix of genres (Roman mythology with science fiction), this dystopian book would have a been more enjoyable to me if it had not been so crass. I confess that I don't like reading made up profanity that obviously is an attempt to create a new way to say "darn" but instead saying "nard". I read another book not long ago that did this, and it falls totally flat and makes me want to laugh at the sophomoric attempt to sneak under the radar.
I was off-put almost immediately by this, and sadly it was hard for me to generate more interest in the book. I may have to try to re-read it later....more
As we approach the 100th anniversary of the assassination of Archduke Ferdinand on the 28th of June, I thought I would read how WWI started. This is aAs we approach the 100th anniversary of the assassination of Archduke Ferdinand on the 28th of June, I thought I would read how WWI started. This is a 10 star book, really amazingly written and terrifyingly apt for today. Instead of writing about the entire First World War, Barbara Tuchman writes about the month preceding the war, and then the first month of the war itself, August 1914.
We are reading Tolkien's "Lord of the Rings" out loud together in the evenings as a family, and one of the things that has struck me is how much of Tolkien's war experience is in LOTR. He was of course in the fighting at the Somme in 1916. I know that Tolkien denied writing about WWI specifically in his books, but I think once you have experienced the horror of trench warfare, you cannot but write about battle using the experiences you have had first hand. The "drums from the deep" from Tolkien reflect the German siege guns. The terror caused by the shrieking of the artillery shells also is reminiscent of the cry of the Nazgul.
But back to Barbara Tuchman's book. It is outstanding. I wept upon reading the chapter about the burning of the Belgium city of Louvain. I knew from my Belgium and Dutch friends about their longstanding hatred of the Germans. I have even witnessed the coldness and barely contained contempt that Belgian shopkeepers demonstrate towards German tourists. And now I know why. The Germans felt totally in the right and justified in using their "theory of terror" as a way to try to use terror among non-combatants as a way to shorten the war. However the horrific execution of civilians set the rest of the world against them. The Germans, like a huge and cruel class bully, denied any wrongdoing but instead blamed the violence on the fact that the Belgians resisted them.
I plan now to read more of Barbara Tuchman's books, and would highly highly recommend this book. ...more
Well written, but very typically depressing John le Carre. No redemption, all trust rewarded with deceit, manipulation on every side, and we are leftWell written, but very typically depressing John le Carre. No redemption, all trust rewarded with deceit, manipulation on every side, and we are left at the end of the book stunned and sad when the master manipulators are out-manipulated. The ending reminds me very much of the end of "The Spy Who Came In from the Cold" except this time le Carre is upset at the United States. No one is a good guy in any situation, really. Every person is made up of the many shades of deceptive gray, sometimes more "white" and sometimes more "black", but never seeming to be who they really are at any time.
I know that le Carre had a most unhappy childhood and relationship with his father (read "A Perfect Spy" for a clear description of his father, Rick Pym in the book). This theme of trust betrayed is common throughout his books, probably because he lived it so deeply himself.
Again well written, but I really could not gather any enthusiasm for any of the characters. ...more
Wow. This was very hard to read. Tragic on so many levels.
American Indians as a way of life stole children from neighboring tribes. They experiencedWow. This was very hard to read. Tragic on so many levels.
American Indians as a way of life stole children from neighboring tribes. They experienced a high mortality rate among their own people for various reasons, and used kidnapping as a way to replenish their numbers. When non-Indians moved into the Indians territory, the Indians continued their means of building up their numbers and kidnapped White, Mexican, and Negro children. For the parents to try to retrieve those children was something they never would have considered.
An interesting item discussed a bit in the book had to do with which kidnapped children acclimated to their lives among the Indians, and which did not. The Indians seemed to understand that children under the ages of 12 or 14 seemed to adapt more to their new lifestyle. If you look at it from a young teen boy perspective, the life of working hard at home with their parents versus the unstructured and unrestricted life of the Comanches or Apaches would no doubt be very attractive. What boy would not rather learn to ride horses, learn to shoot bows and arrows (or pistols), and go on raids to prove their worth? The theory put forth by the author seems to imply that even though these children often saw their own family killed or mutilated in Indian raids, that the overall lifestyle of the Indians was more attractive than going back to their families.
This book made me interested again in Quanah Parker, whose mother was Cynthia Ann Parker, a young girl kidnapped by the Comanches when she was 9. Cynthia Ann lived among the Comanches for 25 years, married and had three children with her chief husband, Peta Nocona. Quanah was her oldest son, and was the chief of the Comanches during the end of the Comanche Wars.
I enjoy reading about history, and was excited to get this from the library on loan. Sadly, I was disappointed to discover a fairly significant errorI enjoy reading about history, and was excited to get this from the library on loan. Sadly, I was disappointed to discover a fairly significant error on pg 189. The author states that "By 1848, war and treaties forced Mexico to hand over Texas, California, and New Mexico Territory to the United States."
Mexico never handed Texas over to anyone. Texas won its independence from Mexico in 1836 and was a republic for 9 years before being annexed by the United States in 1845. Regarding Texas, the 1848 treaty referred to in the book (called by name the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo) merely settled that the border between Mexico and Texas was the Rio Grande River but transferred no land.
I appreciated reading this book, but I have to say that finding this fairly obvious historical error (which in studying Texas history or the history of Mexico would be a major error) made me wonder what other historical errors were in the book.
Because of this, I would not recommend this book at all.
I would recommend instead "Pioneer Women: The Lives of Women on the Frontier" by Linda Peavy and Ursula Smith....more
Instead of reading this book, I'd recommend reading Gracia Burnham's book "In the Presence of My Enemies". Gracia's book is not fiction, it really hapInstead of reading this book, I'd recommend reading Gracia Burnham's book "In the Presence of My Enemies". Gracia's book is not fiction, it really happened. And how they reacted to similar circumstances that are laid out in "My Hands came Away Red" is the reaction of real people living out their Christian faith amidst evil.
This book is a bit too "teeny-bopper-ish" for me. So I would not recommend reading it really at all....more