The Elephant Whisperer is the true story of a Conservationist who started a wildlife preserve in South Africa. Early in the story he is asked to take a herd of dangerous elephants who will otherwise be killed. This is at the heart of the story, although by no means the entire story.
This wildlife preserve, Thula Thula, is a place the author refers to numerous times as “Paradise”. By the end of the book we really feel like it is his own little version of Heaven, replete with glorious sunsets, stretches of untamed earth, and the noble creatures that roam there upon. Nevertheless, it is a paradise without God.
Throughout this entire narrative, we see a man who has made his life’s work that of preserving and protecting the wilds of Africa. Here is a man who so reveres wildlife in all its forms, that he abstains from killing a very dangerous snake, even when it slithers into his bedroom. He would rather walk than move his car, because a spider had created a beautiful web on it that morning. Here also is a man who writes tender accounts of his connection with elephants; this connection is tangible in his rehabilitation of them to accept conditioned human contact.
Lawrence Anthony and Graham Spence are gifted storytellers with a Passionate love for Life. Yet, for all of the splendor, and for all of the reverence for creatures great and small, God was the only thing I felt was truly absent in this book. It felt like something was missing, and that was it. To witness all of the beauty and majesty of Africa as detailed in this sincere autobiography, and still not see God, was heartbreaking (if not the turning of a blind eye).
Another stellar performance by Simon Vance.
"His disciples came to him and said, “Explain to us the parable of the weeds in the field.”
He answered, “The one who sowed the good seed is the Son of Man. The field is the world, and the good seed stands for the people of the kingdom. The weeds are the people of the evil one, and the enemy who sows them is the devil. The harvest is the end of the age, and THE REAPERS ARE THE ANGELS..
“As the weeds are pulled up and burned in the fire, so it will be at the end of the age. The Son of Man will send out his angels, and they will weed out of his kingdom everything that causes sin and all who do evil. They will throw them into the blazing furnace, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth. Then the righteous will shine like the sun in the kingdom of their Father. Whoever has ears, let them hear."
Not sure what this title has to do with the rest of the book. ?
Other than an occasional nod to Christianity, this book is in no other way representative of Christ or Christians. Honor killing/revenge seem to be the underlying emphasis, while the primary thrust of the story seems to be only to survive in a messed up world without losing one's moral compass; The problem I have with that idea, is that the two main characters who illustrate this notion, have their own individual idea about morality. The dichotomy of Individual morals and Christian morals seems irreconcilable. If the author hadn't insisted on creating a connection to Christianity, and then departing from it, it might have carried more weight.
Performance was Tai Sammons solid and entertaining.
The true story of the shipwreck of the Whaling Ship Essex. It is sadly everything we have come to think about, when we think about sailors who starve and thirst as they clinging to a life raft at sea.
Lost in the Ocean for 90 days, the few survivors paint a grisly picture of the lengths they were willing to go to, to stay alive. The style of writing is more "journalistic" than other notable survival stories, and the reference to quotes and historical references, can at times seem cold and objective.
Included in this history of the shipwreck, is: a background of Nantucket, Mass.; background of the whaling industry; complete character profiles of all involved- before and after; and how the shipwreck affected all involved.
I would have preferred just the survival story as written from start to finish, but it was interesting, if not compelling.
A tall, dark and handsome (and mysterious) dude ride into town 'on the wind' (if you will).
Who is he? Where is he going? Where is he from? Nobody knows.
A boy is the first-person narrator in this story. When the 'stranger' arrives asking for water for he and his horse, the father welcomes the stranger and asks him to stay-on for a while. It just so happens that trouble is brewing (and has been for a while). The two men form a strong bond. Although the bond between the two men lacks a clear explanation in the story, we see that the two men illustrate many strengths and virtues, set in a world of fear and weakness (and wickedness).
I was curious about whether the author was trying to make a larger statement. I found that other commentators also speculated about who 'Shane' might be trying to represent.
Some of the speculations include:
A Jekyll-Hyde persona
Embodiment of The Western Hero
Death (think Clint Eastwood in 'Pale Rider')
A Savior Figure (like Christ)
*I do not think this can be compared to the movie. The book is aging much better!
I like to read reviews, so that I can find books like this and new authors!
Never heard of Peter Heller, I never saw this book before, and if I had seen this book I would have passed on it purely because of the title. "The Dog Stars" title is a reference made by the main character near the end of the story that has very little outward importance to the contents of the book. It is the kind of title that shows the author's propensity for the 'subtle or poetic' in his writing.
I enjoy reading PA Stories when they have a modicum of good writing surrounding a plausible storyline. "The Dog Stars" is what "Survivors: A Novel" wanted to be, but wasn't.
"Quick, get the Mystery Van! "
If you like Scooby Doo, you'll probably enjoy this story about an old building and the tenants who search for clues about it under the old wallpaper.
Boring. Six hours later and I just wanted to find out who dunit so I could move,onto something else.
It almost sounds like the beginning of something funny... An Atheist, A Priest, An Agnostic, and A Reformed Sinner all get on a bus...but what you end up with is a meeting of the minds, serious questions, and some hard-line answers (and the occasional swerving of the bus into on-coming traffic).
This is far from being a 'funny story' but is more often the 'serious thoughts' of a lonely and bitter man reflecting on a woman who is no longer in his life, and venting his frustration on a God he can hardly believe in.
Stellar Performance meets Solid Writing
(technology soon to be outdated)...read now.
"Paranoia" is a high-tech corporate drama/thriller. It is an enjoyable and fast-moving novel, albeit somewhat unbelievable.
It is a classic "under achiever becomes brilliant over achiever" story, about a young slacker who finally steps int his own... and has some important choices to make. Will he cross ethical and legal boundaries? Will he sell his soul, or become a man of character? Can he triumph as the underdog against the faceless machine of big business and numerous foes, or will he be swallowed whole? and,etc...
"Paranoia" by Joseph Finder is somewhat in the vein of "Limitless" by Alan Glynn (if you like one, you will probably enjoy the other).
Scott Brick is a solid narrator, but was melodramatic at times.
* Movie coming out August 2013.
Well, its no wonder you're insane, look at what you fill your mind with!
Scandinavian writers seem to like to flash backwards and forwards throughout a story, regardless of what type of story that may happen to be telling!
In this memoir, I was not surprised to find that same structure at play.
"Out Stealing Horses" is the story of an old man looking back on his life, while also looking at his life in the current time. The story weaves back and forth, from past to present, and brings threads from the past story into his current life.
It is the "rememberings" of an old man, reflecting on his visions while he was a young boy, and the events that changed his life. We are able to see how some of the boys visions were naive and innocent, and with the wisdom of age, he (and we the reader) are able to shed new light, and give a depth and clarity, that was not there before.
The writing was skillful, but it did not really touch me on a personal level- I think because it always felt like it was someone else's life.
Report Inappropriate Content
If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.