The subject matter is great, but this is a story to read, not to be listened to as its author bores you completely with his monotone delivery.
There is not a single boring paragraph in the entire book. The author covers a myriad of subjects, directly and indirectly related to the Krakatoa eruption. Each chapter is fascinating. The reader is so in tune with the spirit of the book that he seemed to have written it himself. And, after checking with the book information, I see that he did! I'm glad I didn't miss this one.
While many of the stories that the author shared were interesting, this could have been slimmed down considerably. He goes into incredibly long-winded accounts of uninteresting stories several times. It would have been much better to establish some main characters and follow them thoughgout the timeline rather than bouncing around with many small almost irritating accounts.
Well! over all its an interesting book but i never thought i would get such a detailed history lesson of the region. I am better for knowing about the pepper trade'the dutch and the day to day life of the inhabitants then i was before i started.
I wish i was still taking geology i got a better explination of plate techtonics here then i did from my college instructor.
all in all very good but it might have been a thought to get a dramatic reader to voice the book
in closeing i did learn much more then i expected a good listen.
Beautifully told. He mentions Frederick Church's painting whose sky was inspired by the afterglow from Nov to Mar. Not mentioned is the sky in the famous painting "The Scream" which was also inspired by that same sky effect seen worldwide, despite having been painted a decade later (see Sky and Telescope magazine a month or two ago).
I am a big history novel buff. Having the historical facts right is important and interesting,. However delivering those fact in a coherent and interesting manner is the basics of what makes a great novel which this is not. The time line is difficult to follow, the details become overwhelming to the point you have to take notes to follow along. If you are looking for historical economic facts in minute detail, if all your pencils must be sharp and all your socks are labeled Monday through Sunday you might enjoy this book. If you are looking for a good historical novel take a pass on this one.
After reading Audible's interesting book on Pompeii and the eruption of Mount Vesuvius, I was inspired to learn more about Krakatoa. However, this book appears to spend the first few hours discussing trading practices of the Dutch and Portugese in a slow and pedantic fashion. I can't comment on how interesting or not the author's writing on the eruption and its impact on life in the region was--I simply couldn't hang in there for that. This is dull and monotonous reading and was a very disappointing selection on my part.
When are authors going to learn that they are not also READERS! This book is painfully dry. With all the detail, I felt like I was back in a college class with one of the painfully monotonous professors. I was totally looking forward to this, and totally disappointed. Could NOT get thru it lest I fall asleep at the wheel of the car!