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Month: February 2016

Diary of a Pilgrimage

Diary of a Pilgrimage by Jerome K. Jerome

Diary of a Pilgrimage by Jerome K. Jerome

A possibly fictionalized account by the comic novelist Jerome K. Jerome of a trip to Germany that he undertook with a friend in order to see the famous Passion Play at Oberammergau. The journey takes in London, Dover, Ostend, Cologne, Munich, Oberau, Oberammergau and then back to London via Heidelberg. As one might expect from the author of ‘Three Men in a Boat’, much goes wrong along the way, including seasickness, strange food, stranger beds, misleading guidebooks, bewildering train timetables, and numerous cultural and linguistic misunderstandings.

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China and the Chinese

China and the Chinese by Herbert Allen Giles

China and the Chinese by Herbert Allen Giles

Herbert Allen Giles spent several years as a diplomat in China and in 1897 was appointed Cambridge University’s second professor of Chinese. His published works cover Chinese language and literature, history and philosophy.

This series of lectures, published as “China and the Chinese”, was given at Columbia University in 1902, to mark the establishment of a Chinese professorship there. The lectures were not intended for the specialist, more to urge a wider and more systematic study of China and its culture, and to encourage new students into the field.

While many of the observations are just as relevant today, others will remind us how much China has changed since the period of the Manchu Qing dynasty in which he wrote.

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The Great Gold Rush

The Great Gold Rush by W. H. P. Jarvis

The Great Gold Rush by W. H. P. Jarvis

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The Western United States

The Western United States by Harold W. Fairbanks

The Western United States by Harold W. Fairbanks

“In preparation of this book the author has had in mind the needs of the upper grammar grades. The subject matter has not been selected with the object of covering the field of Western geography in a systematic manner, but instead the attempt has been made to picture as graphically as may be some of its more striking and interesting physical features, and the influence which these features have exerted upon its discovery and settlement.”

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In Kent With Charles Dickens

In Kent With Charles Dickens by Thomas Frost

In Kent With Charles Dickens by Thomas Frost

By his own admission, Thomas Frost found it hard to make a living from his writing, and no doubt he used the name of Dickens in the title of this book to boost sales. Frost tells a good tale, and the book is not only of interest to enthusiasts of Dickens and the county of Kent.

He includes some of Dickens’ own descriptions of locations, as well as regaling us with anecdotes about towns and villages which he visits, including an account of the last armed rising on British soil – the Battle of Bossenden Wood.

As well as accounts of his travels through the highways and byways of Kent in the footsteps of Dickens and his characters, he also wanders into the lanes of myth and legend, sometimes making up his own stories along the way.

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A Woman who went to Alaska

A Woman who went to Alaska by May Kellogg Sullivan

A Woman who went to Alaska by May Kellogg Sullivan

Alaska has only been a state since 1959, and the breathtaking terrain remains mostly unspoiled and natural. In modern times, many of us have had the pleasure of visiting Alaska via a luxurious cruise ship, where we enjoyed gourmet meals, amazing entertainment, and a climate-controlled environment. It’s easy to also book a land package that enables you to see more of the country by train.

Imagine what it was like to visit the same wild, untamed countryside in 1899. Instead of boarding a sleek, stylish cruise ship, you travel for weeks on a steamer. You wait 2 weeks for the open, flat cars of the new railroad just to assure yourself it can travel safely through the dangerous mountain pass. No stately cabin or grand hotel awaits you at the end of your journey; you’ll spend your time in rough mining camps. Such is the case in May Kellogg Sullivan’s spellbinding and vivid account of her Alaskan adventures, which occurred over 18 months during 2 solo trips covering 12,000 miles. This is the perfect travel narrative to enjoy on your Alaskan cruise or in the comfort of your own home.

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Through the Brazilian Wilderness

Through the Brazilian Wilderness by Theodore Roosevelt

Through the Brazilian Wilderness by Theodore Roosevelt

Roosevelt’s popular book Through the Brazilian Wilderness describes his expedition into the Brazilian jungle in 1913 as a member of the Roosevelt-Rondon Scientific Expedition co-named after its leader, Brazilian explorer Cândido Rondon. The book describes all of the scientific discovery, scenic tropical vistas and exotic flora, fauna and wild life experienced on the expedition. One goal of the expedition was to find the headwaters of the Rio da Duvida, the River of Doubt, and trace it north to the Madeira and thence to the Amazon River. It was later renamed Rio Roosevel. Roosevelt’s crew consisted of his 24-year-old son Kermit, Colonel Cândido Rondon, a naturalist sent by the American Museum of Natural History named George K. Cherrie, Brazilian Lieutenant Joao Lyra, team physician Dr. José Antonio Cajazeira, and sixteen highly skilled paddlers (called camaradas in Portuguese). The initial expedition started on December 9, 1913, at the height of the rainy season. The trip down the River of Doubt started on February 27, 1914.

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