A BOOK OF ISLANDS by John S. Bowman


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Why should islands exert such an exceptional appeal?. . . That is what this anthology hopes to help you answer."" After chatting in general about important islands such as Pearl Harbor, island nations, states, and cities, and islands that accommodate tourists, prisons or retired artists, Bowman introduces each selection in terms that not only fail to provide the promised answer but instead extinguish any possible interest in the question. Considering the fact that so many of the excerpts included are either familiar in themselves (the Cyclops episode from the Odyssey) or indifferent parts of well-known works (Gulliver's Travels, Robinson Crusoe, Typee, Treasure Island), that so many of the stories are already easily accessible (Short Story Index alone lists 16 collections for Connell's ""The Most Dangerous Game"") and so many of the others either interesting only as curiosities (an Egyptian shipwreck story, merely ""the oldest written one still extant""), or admittedly not interesting at all (being variously described in Bowman's introductions as ""very dated,"" ""harmless,"" or ""largely unread""), considering also the discouragingly tiny print, then the total package does not appear to be worth considering further.

Pub Date: June 18th, 1971
Publisher: Doubleday