Sunday, 15 June 2008

Off Topic #3 - Making men out of boys

We have just returned from a holiday in the Emerald Isle where my reading material for the week was a copy of Neil Oliver’s excellent new book Amazing Tales for making men out of boys. I came across this book by chance and have thoroughly enjoyed it and have a sneaking feeling that many readers of this blog will enjoy it also.

Oliver is known here in the UK for his TV appearances in the BBC’s Coast and the Two men in a Trench series of programmes. What truly amazes me (no pun intended) is that his book is totally un-politically correct lamenting the emergence of new men and championing tales of what he describes as manly men. Each chapter has a highly readable tale of daring-do focusing not just on the deeds of those such as Nelson, but also on some of the more obscure figures and events in history - the stand of the French Foreign Legion at Camerone and Ernest Shakleton’s voyage across the Southern Ocean in an open top boat to name just two.

What has given me heart is that Oliver is a good ten years younger than me so cannot yet be categorised as an old git. His story telling reminds me of my 1960’s Junior School textbook called People in History that really fired my imagination and life long interest in History at the age of nine or so. The sort of book that would never find its way into a school today!

Great stuff, buy a copy and immerse yourself in the age of manly men (after you’ve first done the washing up, made the tea, changed the baby etc.).

I promise now to get back on topic…


Stokes Schwartz said...

Ah, I know what you mean. I've just finished vaccuuming (hoovering) the house, cleaning the bathroom, and changing the two catboxes. Definitely not manly man stuff. Sigh.

Best Regards,


Stryker said...

Ssshh Stokes, not so loud - you might wake up Mrs S then a whole load of new chores will come my way...