Amazing Tales for Making Men out of Boys Hardcover – 15 May 2008
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'A must-have collection' -- The Times
'Oliver is a wonderful storyteller. This is a book told from the heart with both a passion and breathless awe for the deeds recounted that leaps from every page. Sumptuously illustrated, beautifully told, and in turns both moving and inspiring, it is a joy from start to finish. I defy any reader, whether they be aged nine or ninety, not to walk with a slightly straighter back after putting down these amazing tales.' -- Sunday Telegraph
From the Publisher
Amazing Tales is packed with vivid new accounts of classic stories of courage and heroism including: The Battle of Britain, The Charge of the Light Brigade, The Siege of Dien Bien Phu, The Cockleshell Heroes, The Battle of Isandlwana, The Penlee Lifeboat Disaster, Apollo XIII, The SAS and the Battle of Mirbat, The Yangtse Incident, The Battle of Trafalgar, Shackleton's Boat Journey, Scott of the Antarctic and many more
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Top Customer Reviews
It kept my interest, however, because it's impossible to not be in awe of the unbelievable courage in these stories, and maybe it's in describing the background history which robs the book of its momentum. Historic background is sometimes `dull' in it's telling.
This book does, however, strike a very powerful note with me. It makes a statement at it's core; that modern male children, and young men, have become so `feminised', and masculinity so unfashionable, that modern men of this new generation have lost their way. Traditional male roles have been so diluted that even men's appearance is strongly feminised. (You think not??? Well, when a man's body hair is now treated by most women with at least some revulsion, and that has resulted in many men waxing and shaving, even their legs sometimes, that's a very worrying trend.)
Political correctness and the great feminist movement have brought us to be a shadow of what British men once were, ............and for being brave enough to make the statement it makes about that, means this book is well worth the reading.
It's aimed at older boys as well as adults, but I rather doubt many of those boys would read it cover to cover, which is a shame because they need to read, and be captivated by stories like these.
Had the stories been brought to life a little more, it would have got the full five stars from me.Read more ›
I thoroughly reccommend it.
The cover depicts the epic journey which Scott made to conquer the Antarctic, and that story provides the backbone which runs through the book. Scott's life story is told in segments, leading up to his fateful, final expedition. It's interspliced with other stand-alone epiosdes of heroic endeavour, many of which serve to illustrate one aspect of Scott's accomplishment.
So we also read about the 300 Spartans at Thermopyle, the pilots of the Battle of Britain, the lifeboatmen of Penlee, Ernest Shackleton, the French Foreign Legion, the Light Brigade and another half-dozen examples of heroic conduct plucked from the pages of history. All of it is delivered at something of a dash, creating easily-digested individual stories which are heavy on action and spiced with a little modern interpretation.
None of this is ground-breaking but it is a corking good read. At times the device of splitting up Scott's story doesn't work so well -- in fact, it makes the most important tale in the book feel somewhat disjointed, and reduced the eventual impact of the episode. That's the worst complaint, though.
Neil Oliver doesn't pretend to have any of the qualifications of the heros he describes, but he obviously admires the Britons who were prepared to sacrifice all for their countrymen and colleagues. I also liked the fact that he returns to the theme of 'Britishness' in his comments.
Recommended for all ages and both genders; very useful as a way to introduce younger folks to a bit of history. Perfect for long air flights, too!
Most Recent Customer Reviews
One of those rare books that you just can't put down but want to ration in order to make it last. A real treasure.Published 5 months ago by srameen
Husband not a huge reader but cannot put the book down. I am looking forward to reading it when he finishes........Well Done Neil, a triumph....continue the good work!!!!!!Published 10 months ago by julie twist
I don't know what I expected from this.
And I don't know what I got.
It seems somewhat ironic that Neil Oliver goes on about heroism and what it could teach... Read more
Bought this for my husband and he couldn't put it down or stop talking about it. Recommend.Published on 22 July 2014 by EverLearning
bought for one of my sons to give him a broader view of people and their aspirations, dreams and fears.Published on 20 Jan. 2014 by MRS NICOLA TOLSON
As always very well put together, and most readable. Another hit with the males in my family, as well as with me.Published on 2 Aug. 2013 by binbon
IT WAS BRILLIANT 10/10 "GREAT JOB" MR OLIVER,
Would highly recommend to anyone with a sense of adventure and history