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4.4 out of 5 stars
4.4 out of 5 stars
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VINE VOICEon 3 June 2006
I grew up on the movie so it was quit a shocker to read the book. As stated in the beginning there are no petticoated women in this book. It is a men's adventure written by a man for men. You can not miss the hand of H. Rider Haggard as he has a unique sense of humor that pops up at the strangest times. He may be a little verbose but every word has a use. And as with written stories this one is much more intricate than the movie adaptations. You will find many assumptions of the time such as any complex construction must have been built by white people and natives on their own may turn savage.

The story is told first person by Allan Quartermain. Nevil is off to make his fortune by finding King Solomon's lost diamond mines. Allan sends him a 300 year old map to help. This is the last anyone heard from Nevil. Turns out that Nevil is really the estranged brother of Henry Curtis. Sir Henry Curtis now wants to make amends and he with his friend Captain John Good, bribe Allan Quartermain to take them across an endless desert and trough impassible mountains to an adventure that will hold you to the very end. Along with them is their self imposed helper Umbopa who carries a secret of his own.

If you get a chance to also hear the recording, an added plus is narration by John Richmond; He brings the characters to life and adds to the mystique that this story has been passed down.
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on 15 June 1999
I am eleven and I found this book an enjoyable read. It was written a long time ago and it was first published in 1885 or so I read. Therefore some of the language is hard for some people who might read it. It has many things that are now illegal. For example there are elephant hunts and killing of giraffes.The ending is a bit dramatic and a bit far fetched but still a good read.
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on 19 August 2005
This is a good old fashioned adventure story that takes place in Africa. Yes the story is far fetched but once you get into it you just can't put it down. The descriptions of the exotic landscapes would have excited readers in the nineteenth century but I still feel that they make a modern reader, who will have either visited Africa or at least seen it on TV, feel in awe at the wild nature of the country.

If you are at all politically correct then you will not enjoy this book because of the descriptions of the African tribes and the fact that some of the characters hunt wild elephants. But if that doesn't bother you then you will find that the characters are wonderfully fun and lively, with "Alan Q" having several more books created about his adventures.
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on 16 April 2015
This was no doubt a great book in its day but I have to review as I see it now and as modern people will view it. It has the Victorian idea that it is OK to kill all African wild life -no thought that one day they may be extinct -just shoot it. The story also involves a lot of people being killed in a battle which took place to stop people being killed! The whole plot is implausible and you know the author has to survive to tell the tale. Outdated.
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on 7 December 2014
King Solomon's Mines :) I first read it aged 10, sneaking into the dining room/library and reading a little at a time, I knew I was not allowed to touch special books (leather bound, gold edging to pages) but it was calling me. I Loved It! Magical. I wanted to be an explorer ha ha. Now in my 70's I again read and it still thrills me, wonderful book, takes me back over 60 years, the memory didn't tarnish. Never did get to be an explorer. :)
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on 11 October 2014
A well written adventure story that has obviously influenced many books and films since it was written, especially the Indiana Jones film series. A group of adventurers set off in pursuit of the treasures of King Solomon's mines. Along the way they endure hardship and numerous set-backs. Some sections of the story I found were a little drawn out with descriptive writing but it was worth sticking with until the story reaches its exciting climax.
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on 12 July 2013
I tried this book grudgingly and I have to admit I was very pleasantl surprised. This book was written over a century ago yet still remains a swashbuckling tale of intrigue and adventure.

Admittedly, despite the book being remarkably progressive for its day, portraying Africans (notably Zulus) as noble warriors and wise chiefs, Haggard does display some of the prejudices of his era, remarking of Ventvogel that he was prone to bouts of drinking 'as was typical of his race' and disapproving of the romance between Captain Goode and the Kukuana girl Foulata. It's important to see past this however and to remember that when the book was written people had a different moral outlook- focusing on the political incorrectness will simply serve to hinder your enjoyment of what is essentialy a 19th century equivalent of toda's action movies.
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on 10 May 2015
I certainly can't add anything of worth in reviewing such a classic so I will simply say that I thoroughly enjoyed it. Brilliantly written, really transported me to another time and place. My usual fare is horror, the occasional thriller, so this was a very different beast for me. Glad I tackled it. Recommended.
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on 15 September 2013
I absolutely loved this book!
It's an epic African adventure, following a trio of travellers and their Zulu servant, as they try to find the brother of one of the group. The brother went to King Solomon's Mines several years ago, and was never seen again.
Whilst searching for him, the trio encounter angry elephants, curious lions, and an isolated civilisation of tribal warriors battling for a new king.
I would definitely recommend this book! It was everything a reader could possibly want in an epic adventure story.
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on 21 June 2013
Years since I read this classic book and I had forgotten the story which is good Boys Own stuff. Much of it is not politically correct these days but in the era it was written these ideas were accepted so we must not frown on the ideas expressed in the book. In days gone by hanging was accepted as a suspended sentence but not today. Running the Ordeal was another practise and being stretched on the wrack but if they are included in stories we just accept them. Interesting novel. The author wrote other trilling follow-up books to this one.
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