Saturday, December 24, 2016

The Voyages Of Captain James Cook

Book Summary:

In 1766 the Royal Society chose James Cook to lead a South Pacific voyage. He was to chart the path of Venus across the sun. After completing his task, he continued to explore the southern hemisphere for the imagined continent Terra Australis. This voyage lasted from 1768-71. He kept journals on the expedition which made him a celebrity when he returned home. He had scientists and artists traveling with him who also documented the voyage. Some of the charts he created were still used in the 1990s.

My Thoughts:

This book was such an adventure to read. I really liked reading parts of Captain Cook's journals while seeing different pictures of what he was describing. Some are from artists aboard his ship, while others are more modern. I found myself liking both, but really appreciated it when the illustrations were from people also on the voyage experiencing what Captain Cook was describing in a similar way. The modern pictures did not take away from the experience. I think they helped to enhance it. Both the historical and modern pictures complemented the writing.

I knew Captain Cook traveled a lot, but was impressed by all the different places and observations this work contained. He went to the South Pacific, South America, Antartica, New Zealand, the Pacific Coast from California to Alaska, the Arctic Circle, Siberia, the East Indies, and the Indian Ocean. I found it absolutely incredible that he went to all of these places in the 1700s. This book takes you on an adventure to all of these places. The writing is intriguing and keeps you very interested in the book.

If you are interested in reading some of Captain Cook's journal entries, I highly recommend reading this version. It is well organized and a beautiful edition.

*I received a free copy of this book from the Goodreads First Reads Program in exchange for an honest review.

*Receiving a free copy of this book does not change my review. It simply provides me with a copy of a book sooner than I would have gotten to it or book I would not have heard about otherwise.

Saturday, December 10, 2016

The Fleet At Flood Tide

The Fleet At Flood Tide details the United States Pacific War campaign during World War II. From the strategic seizure of the Marianas to Hiroshima and Nagasaki, we learn of the forerunners to today's Navy SEALS, aircraft carrier power, aerial battles, and naval battles. Not only do we read about the battles,  but the leaders of those battles.

This is a very detailed account of the United States' war in the Pacific. I found this very interesting to read as I have read a lot about World War II, but not very much about the Pacific part of the War. I thought that this was an excellent book to fill in the gaps in my knowledge. I am certain there is still much to learn, but found this to be a good source to begin learning about the Pacific theatre. To be clear, this is during the years 1944-5. So if you want to read about Pearl Harbour you should read a different book.

I thought this was a very detailed account of the battles in World War II Pacific theatre. I would say you need to be prepared for that when reading this book. There were a few times I felt overwhelmed with the details, but that is mainly because a lot of the names and specifics of the battles were new to me.

I did really like the different perspectives he gave while writing this book. We do not only read the American perspective. We read what civilians thought about soldiers coming into their homelands. We learn about Japanese soldiers, and regular American soldiers, not just the men at the top.

I would recommend this book if you are interested in the United States' Navy, and detailed accounts of World War II. I have not read any of this author's other books, but he has several about the Navy in World War II if you are interested in reading more of his work on the subject.

*I received a free copy of this book from Goodreads First Reads Program in exchange for an honest review.

*Receiving a free copy of this book does not change my review. It simply provides me with a copy of a book I would not have gotten to as soon or heard about otherwise.