Summer of Adventure!

I am so far behind I think I’m first.  I had planned to do each of these books as individual posts but in the interest of getting them marked off the To Do List I’m doing them all here.  I probably would have never picked up most of these books on my own, but I’m glad I found them. 

Kim by Rudyard Kipling, read by Adrian Praetzellis.  Loved this story about a white boy who is orphaned in India when his father, an Irish soldier drinks himself to death.  Left to his own devices he survives by begging and running small errands.  Eventually he become the Chela for a Tibetan Lama who is searching for the river that will release him from The Wheel of Life.  Untimely it is discovered that Kim is not an Indian urchin and is sent to school to learn the skills necessary to become a surveyor.  What Kim doesn’t realize, at first anyway, is that he is also being groomed to become a spy for the British government in The Great Game.

 The Thirty-Nine Steps by John Buchan also read by Adrian Praetzellis.  Another spy story only this one is set in Great Britain at the dawn of World War I.  Richard Hanney is a bored Scot-expat who manages to get himself mixed up with a plot to kill the Greek Premier and steal British naval secrets.  Every step he takes leads him deeper and deeper into to trouble.   I can’t wait to read Greenmantle the second Richard Hanney novel.

The Thirty-Nine Steps also happens to be one of my all time favorite movies, but only the Alfred Hitchcock version.   I was taken by complete surprise to discover that the movie is almost nothing like the book.  But this is one of those rare instances where they are so different that they cannot really be compared.

Tarzan of the Apes by Edgar Rice Burroughs, read by Mark Smith.  This book was by far the biggest surprise for me.  I really only picked it because it was a reasonably quick read/listen.   I have never seen any of the Tarzan movies and I’ve only seen a handful of episodes from the TV show Tarzan which I thought were pretty lame.  The book on the other hand was so entertaining that I put my plans to read Robinson Crusoe on the back burner and immediately downloaded the next 5 Tarzan books from librivox.org.  So now I know what I’m reading in July.

I also have to mention a couple of other books that fit in this category that I read earlier in the year.  Kidnapped  *and Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson and last but certainly not least King Solomon’s Mines by H. Rider Haggard.

*I did not read/listen to the librivox version so I cannot vouch for its quality but it was read by Mark Smith who also read Tarzan of the Apes and he did a good job on that.

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