Would he like that book by Ewan McGregor, Long Way Round? McGregor and his friend decide to motorbike around the world. I prefer travel books to adventure myself, but this sort of encompasses the two. It's fairly well reviewed on Amazon, and quite new.
I'm pretty impressed, by the way, with you buying a present for your sister-in-law's boyfriend!
I'm surprised no one has mentioned "In Cold Blood" by Truman Capote. It's probably the granddaddy of the true crime genre.
Love this thread! I've read at least half the books mentioned but I'm gonna print this thread to get the titles of the other half! They all sound so good.
Great suggestion, giz! :up I was obsessed with the show when it was on Bravo and I keep meaning to buy the book, but the need for groceries and electricity keeps winning out! :lol Maybe for Christmas.... I think the book was out in May or June of this year.
Originally Posted by giz
I don't know about anyone else, but I didn't mention In Cold Blood because it's so old - most people (okay, at least the nerdy, bookish people I know! :nerd) have already read it. However, if you haven't read it, you must. It's a classic. For that matter, anything by Capote is worth a read (even Unanswered Prayers, although to a lesser extent!). That man was an artist.
I just bought A History of the World in 6 Glasses by Tom Standage. In it, he tells the story of the world from the Stone Age through the 21st century through a discussion of beer, wine, spirits, coffee, tea and cola. It's on my list over the Winter Break. I'll give a review when I'm done :up
Another 'true crime' that reads almost like a novel is "The Onion Field" by Joseph Wambaugh, which I read years ago and still remember as one of my all time favorites.
I also liked this newer book which isn't exactly action packed, since so much of it focuses on research, but I found it fascinating!
Four Against the Arctic : Shipwrecked for Six Years at the Top of the World
by David Roberts (Author)
When David Roberts came across a reference to four Russian sailors who had survived for six years on a barren Arctic island, he was incredulous. An expert on the literature of adventure, Roberts had never heard the story and doubted its veracity. His quest to find the true story turned into a near-obsession that culminated with his own journey to the same desolate island. In Four Against the Arctic Roberts shares the remarkable story that he discovered, perhaps the most amazing survival tale ever recorded.
In 1743 a Russian ship bound for Arctic walrus-hunting grounds was blown off course and trapped in ice off the coast of Svalbard (Spitzbergen). Four sailors went ashore with only two days' supplies to look for an abandoned hut they knew about on the island. They found it and returned to tell their shipmates the good news, only to find that their ship had vanished, apparently crushed and sunk by the ice.
The men survived more than six years until another ship blown off course rescued them. During that time they made a bow and arrows from driftwood (Svalbard has no trees) and killed nine polar bears in self-defense. They survived largely on reindeer meat, killing 250 of the animals during their ordeal.
Fascinated as he was by this remarkable story, Roberts wondered how it had dwindled into obscurity. For two years he researched the tale in libraries and archives in the United States, France, and Russia. In Russia he traveled to the sailors' hometown, where he met the last survivors of their families, who knew the story from an oral tradition passed down for more than 250 years. Finally, with three companions he organized an expedition to the barren island of Edgeøya in southeast Svalbard, where he spent three weeks looking for remnants of the sailors' lost hut and walking the shores while pondering the men's astonishing survival.
Four Against the Arctic is a riveting book about man versus nature and a delightfully engaging journey deep into an obsession with historical rediscovery. But it is more even than that: It is a meditation on the genius of survival against impossible odds that makes a story so inspirational that it still fires the imagination centuries later.
Snowy, a fabulous adventure story is Paddle to the Amazon, by Don Starkell. Don and his son Dana (who I met years ago) are little-known adventurers who paddled a canoe from Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada (my hometown :yay) to Brazil (yeah, you read that right). They had an absolutely amazing adventure, including almost being assassinated as spies in Central America.
Don Starkell also attempted to paddle to a location in the Arctic, but I don't know if he was successful...I believe he wrote a book about that journey as well.
It may not be an easy book to find (it's Canadian :D) but if you are really interested, I'll send you my copy. You can also try McNally Robinson's Canadian website.
To relieve some holiday stress with some genuine belly-laughs, try finding
Not Tonight Honey, Wait 'Til I'm a Size Six by Susan Reinhardt. From Booklist:
Newspaper columnist Reinhardt has put together a collection of anecdotes and tales that ranges from side splitting to achingly poignant. She's like a modern-day, southern-fried Erma Bombeck or Dave Barry, and her tales of the ordinary will resonate with women everywhere. Meet her husband, Tidy Stu, who won't let her have bed skirts or load the dishwasher; her grandmother, who insists she doesn't smoke as she hides the lit evidence in her apron pockets; and her mother, a true southern lady and "double virgin." Laugh as Susan, determined to get her children a dog despite Tidy Stu's objections, purchases a nursing dachshund in a parking lot; hold back the tears as her mother comforts her through a miscarriage and as she leaves her son on his first day of school. Readers of all stripes will find themselves relating to Susan and thoroughly enjoying these, by turns, raunchy and tear-inducing real-life stories.
Sounds like a great read, queenb. Thanks
I have been so busy with Christmas stuff, I have been remiss in thanking you for all the great book suggestions! We ended up getting my SIL's boyfriend some cologne instead, but I'll keep all these titles in mind for Mr. Snowman (and even myself) in the future. :up
She is such a darling (in RL she doesn't even like to say "in-law" and prefers to consider us as "real sisters"); she really loves and is serious about this fellow, and since he makes her happy, we love him too. :)
Originally Posted by giz
Right now I'm reading "Having Our Say" about sisters born in the 1890's who lived past 100 years old. Sadie and Bessie Delany, and so far it is really good.
What would it had been like to have been born and raised in the post Civil War South as African American females? That is exactly what Sarah Louise and her younger sister Annie Elizabeth write about very plainly and honestly in their best-selling book of memoirs called Having Our Say, The Delany Sisters' First 100 Years published in 1993. Their extraordinary account of living during this very vital,but dangerous time includes meeting some of the greatest African Americans of their time,surviving the growing numbers of hate groups, enjoying the splendors of Harlem's Golden Age, living long enough to witness remarkable changes, and getting some measure of satisfaction(and revenge!) for the progress made in civil rights for African Americans. This is better than reading any history book!
Someone mentioned "Silent Night" by Stanley Weintraub. I loved that book.I bought a copy for my dad for Christmas.
I love good travel/adventure books...hubby bought me Ewan McGregor "Long Way Round" in book and DVD...what a lucky girl I am!!
My favourite non-fiction book of all time has to be "An Evil Cradling" by Brian Keenan - an Irish man who was held hostage in Beirut by Shi'ite militants for 4 and a half years along with John McCarthy. He is an amazing wordsmith. There is one bit where he charts his descent into temporary madness. Incredible book . I highly recommend it.
Another travel/adventure writer whom I adore is Tim Cahill. Used to be a writer for Rolling Stone magazine...wrote "Jaguars Ripped My Flesh", "A Wolverine is Eating my Leg" and "Pecked to Death by Ducks" and one more, that I can't remember...about a truck journey from the bottom of South America up to the top of Alaska. He went to the island after the Jim Jones mass suicide and saw the aftermath. He spent time hiking in Death Valley. Went to Haiti to follow the path of Gaugin. Great writer.
That's it for now. :)
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