Book Reviews

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Columbus: The Four Voyages

School children throughout the United States learn about the "discovery" of America by Christopher Columbus, but what is the story of Columbus?

Hyperbole and a Half by Allie Brosh

Allie Brosh hasn't cured cancer, climbed Mount Everest while fighting a bear, or achieved any other accomplishments that society would find inspirational and uplifting. Instead, she wrote a blog.

The Diary of Samuel Pepys

Samuel Pepys was a man of somewhat humble beginning, but he also had family in the British government and that had gone to Cambridge. These connections provided him an entry into the Admiralty where Pepys spent much of his working life.

The River of Doubt

How many individuals choose to explore the unknown? One former United States President looking for adventure braved weather, insects, and illness while doing this very thing.

Kansas City author Candice Millard in The River of Doubt: Theodore Roosevelt’s Darkest Journey provides an intimate look at the expedition Roosevelt took in 1914 on the River of Doubt (since renamed Roosevelt River) in Brazil. After losing the 1912 Presidential election to Woodrow Wilson, Roosevelt went home to New York to lick his wounds. He did not want to think his life of service had ended. Also, his drive to explore and be outdoors after his days of ranching in the Dakotas and hunting in Africa had never left him.

An invitation for a series of speaking engagements in South America led the former president to investigate the possibility of engaging his passion for natural history by going down the unexplored River of Doubt in the Amazon rain forest. With assistance from the American Museum of Natural History, a trip with Roosevelt leading took shape to venture down this tributary to the Amazon. Both Americans and Brazilians joined this expedition, including Roosevelt’s son Kermit. Equipment and supplies were collected and the group set out on their journey.

Psycho by Robert Bloch

Most of us are familiar with Psycho, Alfred Hitchcock’s 1960 classic suspense film about a timid serial killer who “wouldn’t hurt a fly,” but have you ever read Robert Bloch’s dark novel which inspired the legendary screen gem?

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