Monthly Archives: January 2012

The Lost City of Z

Although certainly not as exciting as an Amazon expedition, the tribe known as the Crandall Public Library Monday Evening Book Discussion Group, braved the elements  and gathered on January 23, 2012 to explore David Grann’s pulse-pounding adventure narrative The Lost City of Z: A Tale of Deadly Obsession in the Amazon.  The conversation wandered in any number of directions as the group’s thoughts regarding the work were explored.  Subjects touched on include:

  • Percy Fawcett – Man and Myth
  • Gender and Historical Perception
  • The Ugly Imperialist
  • Exploration and Economics
  • Pedagogical Perspectives and Practices

If you liked The Lost City of Z, then you might enjoy Mr. Grann’s other full-length work The Devil and Sherlock Holmes.  I think that The Daily Beast sums it up nicely.  “The truth is always stranger than fiction, even when it comes to murder mysteries. That’s the take-home lesson of Grann’s latest collection, which brings together 12 stories of real-life mysteries, each one stranger and more gripping than the last.”  Sounds exciting!

It goes without saying that I am looking forward to our February meet-up, which will feature the group’s first ever discussion of a graphic novel.  The work in question is Marjane Satrapi’s critically acclaimed Persepolis.  As if that’s not enough, the book was made into a delightful animated movie, and the library has three copies.  Given the recent turmoil in Iran, this discussion seems as if it’s marked for greatness.  Even better, get ready for the return of Anne “Always Awesome” Nelson as guest moderator.  I could drone on forever about how great February’s festivities are going to be, but in the words of the great Stan Lee, “nuff said!”   


David Grann’s Home Page

David Grann at The New Yorker

David Grann Speaks

LibraryThing: The Lost City of Z

4 Must Read Tales of Adventure

William Least Heat Moon once quipped that we ought to “be careful going in search of adventure – it’s ridiculously easy to find.”  Well, that’s certainly true at the library!  The elements have been the genesis of adventure since the very beginning.  In light of this, the following fours works offer a nod to earth, air, fire, and water.  I am quite sure that that they will thrill even the most jaded of armchair adventurers.

Desert Solitaire by Edward Abbey
“…a passionately felt, deeply poetic book…set down in a lean, racing prose, in a close-knit style of power and beauty.”
–The New York Times Book Review

West with the Night by Beryl Markham
“I wish you would get it and read it because it is really a bloody wonderful book.”
–Ernest Hemingway

Young Men and Fire by Norman Maclean
“…a somber and poetic retelling of a tragic event. It is the pinnacle of smoke jumping literature and a classic work of 20th-century nonfiction.”
–The Wall Street Journal

Endurance: Shackleton’s Incredible Voyage by Alfred Lansing
“One of the most gripping, suspenseful, intense stories anyone will ever read.”
–The Chicago Tribune



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