The more I read the more I was amazed at how little I actually knew of "ancient" America. This insightful view into a panorama of in-depth research, disciplines, and topics uncovers for the reader an almost "alternate reality" of the pre-Columbian Americas with an excellent overview of other early peoples in other continents as well.
This is an excellent book for anyone interested in the past of the Americas, but also anyone interested in sci-fi, culture, and social dynamics on a global scale. Sci-fi readers would be interested in this book not because the facts presented aren't valid, instead because it transports the reader to an entirely different world than North American educated people would expect of the setting and time-frame.
Those interested in botany and the general ecological sciences may also be interested as it shows a history of the Americas and how we have the trees and plants we currently have.
Get swept away on a great tale and tour of a distant land and place and then wonder about who else may have lived and breathed on the land you may now call home.
Among the most informative books (along with the companion work 1493) I've listened to. This is a thorough overview of recent research and new facts regarding the status of the "New World" and how it came to be populated.
While there are no characters in this work of non-fiction Peter Johnson has a remarkable facility with the very difficult native American languages which allows for a seamless narration.
There were several points in the book that revealed the character of the native peoples in new ways. One comes to realize that the flaws and strengths of all people are quite the same and every culture has its moment of genius and absurdity.
Yes. We are starting to read the landscape and to get a clearer understanding that the virgin Americas weren't so virgin after all. Change is constant. Understanding change is not.
Realizing what has been studied and confirmed in the past 10 years!
A better reader. A story which flowed. This was a boring presentation
Didn't anyone know this is why kids hate history in school??
I would avoid it like the plague!!
Dismal disappointment.Great topic ruined by boring presentation.
Yes, I strongly recommend that this book be removed from the library.
history, science, et al.
Great book for anyone even mildly interested in Native American history. Narrates the unique culture and complex politics of the Iroquois, Inca, and Aztec in thrilling detail, as well as the story of Native American people as a whole. Cinematic descriptions of the pilgrims and conquistadors from the native point of view. Emphasizes scientific findings about Native American origins, engineering, agriculture, and ultimately epidemics and downfall. Highlights remaining questions as much as the "current" answers. Narrator is clear and animated.
Better organization. The story was harder to follow than it should have been due to the author's meandering plot.
Crisply and clearly read.
The research on history of the Americas before Columbus is fascinating and insightful. However, because of the names of cultures, historical figures, places and dates the information is hard to grasp and retain from an audio book. This book is best suited to a hard copy - I will buy the hard copy of the series because one really needs to be able to refer back to early material and make notes.
I rated this book as a Three just to highlight the issue of the audio experience. Otherwise, I would rate the content as a Five. Sometimes you just need a hard copy.
The many Indian names used in the book are just read as if they were Tom or Jane - so you don't get hung up on the complexities of the names. Friends who read the book in paper form found that to be a problem.
Almost everything in the book was a new insight for me. I thought I knew American History - but after reading this book I found out how little I really knew. The book would be better if split by the author into 2 books - there is the "history text book" where he explains the factual/scientific sources for the information, and then there is the story portion - the lives of the people in the western hemisphere, prior to 1491. Unfortunately the inter mixing of these two texts into a single book, makes it a difficult read (or listen) but it is clearly worth it!
Liam Neeson...maybe comrade Hitch if he were still with us.
I read this book last year and wanted to review it again with the audio version. I just can't manage it. Peter Johnson's style to me lacks vibrance. His performance see-saws through the content with a droning, high school text book-like quality. Peter, you're not necessarily reading to high schoolers. Feel free to throw back a couple shots as you read your next book. I think it would help.
The information is mostly new to me and not what I learning in high school or college...Nice to get a bit of scholarly research on a topic that has been around for so long...
He can pronounce all the crazy names of people and place and helps me to keep them all straight
No extreme reaction...just healthy curiosity...
Thanks for having it in your library...for me to buy...