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Reviewer's preface: This is the first book I have read about falconry, and at this point in my life I am merely a casual observer and information seekReviewer's preface: This is the first book I have read about falconry, and at this point in my life I am merely a casual observer and information seeker, rather than an individual ready to take the plunge into apprenticeship and eventually mastery of the sport. As such, take my review with a grain of salt as I have very little knowledge to compare against or with the book.[return][return]A Falconry Manual is an excellent introductory book into the world of falconry. Written by Frank Beebe, one of the most well-respected falconers, the information comes straight from one of the most educated and experienced of North America's falconers at the time of publishing (1976). Roughly the first half of the book is an introduction to the different birds available for falconry in North America - falcons, buteos and accipiters. Each bird has at least two pages that describe its characteristics and traits, natural habitats, the type of prey and its attack methods, and how easy or difficult it is to be trained.[return][return]The rest of the book offers a glimpse into acquiring a falcon, some of the the equipment necessary and how to make them, training, and hunting with the birds. When certain aspects are different for different species of birds, the following section takes care of that. A Falconry Manual contains a lot of general and broad information about nearly every aspect of the sport, but also excludes some information (health concerns, and more specific techniques). However, he accomplishes a great deal in introducing the sport to the reader, and that is how the book should be viewed: as an introductory book to give the reader the general outline of nearly every aspect of the sport. This is an excellent book to pass around to anyone who may be slightly interested in the sport (and who wouldn't be?), and the price (between $15-20 USD) allows one to purchase two or three copies specifically for that purpose....more
The Gnoll Credo tells the tale of Gryka and Aidan, two tremendously different individuals - one being human and the other being a Gnoll. The two shareThe Gnoll Credo tells the tale of Gryka and Aidan, two tremendously different individuals - one being human and the other being a Gnoll. The two share tales and learn about each others' cultures through conversation, and we learn what it means to be a Gnoll in a world that initially seems distant but is littered with references from our world. This lack of a different fantasy setting may be enough to deter some readers, but the real deterrence may be in the actual writing. Though it is a book that can quickly and easily be read, there is not much to grasp from it. This is the typical story of a white man who goes above and beyond to join a native culture because modern society is bad. He learns what it means to be strong, fast and efficient.[return][return]As countless reviewers have suggested, reading this is like reading a book version of Avatar, Dances with Wolves, The Lost Samurai, Pocahontas or many other modern movies - except the characters are weaker and the author's agenda is to make the reader feel as if he is living a wasted, weak life. For pure entertainment purposes it isn't a terrible book, but expect to be preached to for not living your life differently....more