THE EARLY AMERICAN WILDERNESS

AS THE EXPLORERS SAW IT

From Lawrence (Six Presidents, Two Many Wars, 1972, etc.): another Great Moments effort, derived from accounts by first explorers of North America, and in particular of the territory that became the US. Although starting with the Norse explorations late in the tenth century, the bulk of Lawrence's patchwork chronicle describes the better-known travels of the 16th and 17th centuries, finally skipping a hundred years to focus on Lewis and Clark's historic journey, which began in 1804. The discoveries of Cartier, Champlain, de Soto, Coronado, and others are dealt with in turn, with landings and significant events carefully noted. Natives receive considerable attention, and pristine forests and the wondrous creatures inhabiting them are also amply detailed, with the reader often invited to consider that these natural riches were subsequently squandered as exploration gave way to settlement and exploitation. The routes of those ventures into the unknown come complete with references to modern cities and interstate highways, so that Henry Hudson sails his Half Moon up the river bearing his name to a landfall in the vicinity of 42nd Street. Western adventures and journeys into the interior also receive attention, but the whole is such a hodgepodge of rehashed journal entries and attempts to relate to America today that only glimpses of the original fascinating experiences remain. Short on style and continuity; of interest only to those for whom history is attractive when eviscerated in general summaries.

Pub Date: July 22, 1991

ISBN: 1-55778-145-1

Page Count: 256

Publisher: N/A

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1, 1991

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Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis...

THE ELEMENTS OF STYLE

50TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION

Privately published by Strunk of Cornell in 1918 and revised by his student E. B. White in 1959, that "little book" is back again with more White updatings.

Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis (whoops — "A bankrupt expression") a unique guide (which means "without like or equal").

Pub Date: May 15, 1972

ISBN: 0205632645

Page Count: 105

Publisher: Macmillan

Review Posted Online: Oct. 28, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 1972

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WHAT A WONDERFUL WORLD

A LIFETIME OF RECORDINGS

Noted jazz and pop record producer Thiele offers a chatty autobiography. Aided by record-business colleague Golden, Thiele traces his career from his start as a ``pubescent, novice jazz record producer'' in the 1940s through the '50s, when he headed Coral, Dot, and Roulette Records, and the '60s, when he worked for ABC and ran the famous Impulse! jazz label. At Coral, Thiele championed the work of ``hillbilly'' singer Buddy Holly, although the only sessions he produced with Holly were marred by saccharine strings. The producer specialized in more mainstream popsters like the irrepressibly perky Teresa Brewer (who later became his fourth wife) and the bubble-machine muzak-meister Lawrence Welk. At Dot, Thiele was instrumental in recording Jack Kerouac's famous beat- generation ramblings to jazz accompaniment (recordings that Dot's president found ``pornographic''), while also overseeing a steady stream of pop hits. He then moved to the Mafia-controlled Roulette label, where he observed the ``silk-suited, pinky-ringed'' entourage who frequented the label's offices. Incredibly, however, Thiele remembers the famously hard-nosed Morris Levy, who ran the label and was eventually convicted of extortion, as ``one of the kindest, most warm-hearted, and classiest music men I have ever known.'' At ABC/Impulse!, Thiele oversaw the classic recordings of John Coltrane, although he is the first to admit that Coltrane essentially produced his own sessions. Like many producers of the day, Thiele participated in the ownership of publishing rights to some of the songs he recorded; he makes no apology for this practice, which he calls ``entirely appropriate and without any ethical conflicts.'' A pleasant, if not exactly riveting, memoir that will be of most interest to those with a thirst for cocktail-hour stories of the record biz. (25 halftones, not seen)

Pub Date: May 1, 1995

ISBN: 0-19-508629-4

Page Count: 224

Publisher: Oxford Univ.

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 1995

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