A reader of biographies, history, and other non-fiction
After reading this author’s 1491 – a book on pre-Columbian America – I downloaded an unabridged audio of this volume. Again – a fascinating story of the world becoming intertwined, with people, plants and germs moving from one continent to another, with massive consequences for everyone involved and their descendants. Again – an utter lack of author’s self-control as he goes off on one tangent after another. Some of those digressions are quite interesting, for the example a long one on the Irish potato famine, but hey! – it was over 300 years after Columbus. Your book is not called ‘interesting stories I’ve heard that pop into my mind.’
To me, a great example of a book of this genre is The Fatal Shore: The Epic of Australia’s Founding. Robert Hughes moved his story forward at a good clip, with multiple vignettes quickly returning to the main channel. He pulled it off beautifully, while this author did not. I still recommend his book, just do not get it on audio because with a regular book it is easier to skip its huge number of irrelevant bits.
A truly wonderful book like "1493" deserves more: the reader should have checked the pronunciation of foreign names, for instance.
My reading and listening tastes are eclectic.
This is a very well read book. It is also informative and thought provoking. I loved listening to it and I learned a lot.
I thought this was fascinating listen! The author draws connections between different events through history and shows their global impact. I really enjoyed this book.