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Book reviews for "North,_Gary" sorted by average review score:

Mason Jars in the Flood and Other Stories
Published in Hardcover by Parkway Publishers, Inc. (2000)
Author: Gary N. Carden
Amazon base price: $20.00
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Heartfelt, Genuine, Endearing
Many of the chapters in Gary N. Carden's MASON JARS IN THE FLOOD AND OTHER STORIES explores the life of a young boy raised by grandparents after the death of his father and abandonment by his mother. As Harley Teester grows, he comes to understand--no, to feel--the traditions, ties, and assumptions that have shaped his family's way of life. As we watch him mature, we see him incorporate his new experiences away from home with his former learning. Harley successfully defines himself not by rebelling against his past but by applying it and adapting it.

MASON JARS won the Appalachian Book of the Year Award for books published in 2000 from the Appalachian Writers Association. As a poet and a playwright, Carden has a master's sense of how voices should sound, and the autobiographical elements of MASON JARS coupled with the polish of his telling and re-telling these stories give his prose the ring of authenticity. Enjoy it privately, but read it aloud to friends if you get a chance. MASON JARS is poignant, bracing, and honest.

Appalachian Storytelling at its Best
We first contacted him after seeing his film "Blow the Tannery Whistle." He graciously agreed to share a few stories with us and told us that "Mason Jars in the Flood" would be out soon.

We were anxious to read the book after seeing his masterful storytelling in the film, and when "Mason Jars" hit the press, we were not disappointed. This collection of Appalachian stories is Gary Carden at his best. Full of humor and nostalgia, this is the type of reading that can be enjoyed by relaxing on the front porch with your feet propped up.

Take a journey with one of the finest of all storytellers as he shares with us tales of growing up in the Southern Appalachian Mountains.

Funny, true, and wonderful
Gary Carden describes himself as a storyteller. He says he never tells a tale the same way twice, because his elaborations depend on how he is doing with a particular audience. So putting his tales to paper was a formidable task. He was up to it.

The collection is roughly autobiographical. The same essential details, names, incidents, come up again and again, and in spite of Carden's admittance to his tendency to stretch the truth, we know the essence is true both historically and emotionally. In this way, it differs from the writings of some others, like Mark Twain and Garrison Keilor, to whom he will be inevitably compared. Somehow Carden is more "the real thing" than these others. He is speaking from his own life, one that he continues to live.

Mason Jars generally follows a sequential path. The hero of most of these stories is Harley Teester, his name steeped in North Carolina rhythms. His adventures - more the adventures of others in which he somehow becomes involved, really - start when he is eight or nine years old and continue, on a bumpy path, to his present age. They take us from the simple naivete of a child who can make no sense of the odd reference to such things as "the trouser worm" to the sophisticated and wise understanding of the older man.

While the first several stories read like chapters in Harley's biography, others diverge. There are the "grandmother stories", in which Carden creates grandmothers who are not quite socially correct, who will fill a child's head with gruesome tales and revel in the effect. It's easy to imagine Carden giving wing to this primary character in front of an audience.

There are also tales of the supernatural, and his own versions of myths and legends. What overlays all in this diverse collection is a sense of hope, of good, of the essential goodness of man. It doesn't come from having been raised in a bed of roses or from having everything come easily to him. Perhaps the optimism is a result of the adversity he has weathered and survived. More, perhaps, from the pleasure of being able to capitalize on it in this way.

Little Crow, Spokesman for the Sioux
Published in Paperback by Minnesota Historical Society (1986)
Author: Gary Clayton, Anderson
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Seminal Work on Little Crow
Gary C. Anderson is an expert on Dakota/Sioux history. His doctoral dissertation, published under the title "Kinsmen of Another Kind," discussed Dakota/White relations from the 17th to the 19th century. In "Through Dakota Eyes," Anderson collected dozens of Indian narratives concerning the 1862 Dakota uprising in Southeastern Minnesota. This book, "Little Crow: Spokesman for the Sioux," finds Anderson delving deep into the archives in order to present a better picture of that enigmatic Dakota chief Taoyateduta, known to history as Little Crow.

The main thesis of Anderson's "Kinsmen of Another Kind" was the importance of kinship ties within the Dakota tribes as well as with outsiders. Traders formed kinship ties with the Dakota because the ties allowed the traders to use the Dakotas to gather furs for them. Dakotas benefited from kinship ties because the ties involved gift giving. Whites had to give gifts to the Dakotas if they wanted to maintain trade and relations. As more and more whites moved into the region, kinship ties slowly disintegrated because whites no longer needed to deal with the Dakotas on an equal basis. It is important to understand these kinship ties when reading "Little Crow," as Anderson again makes these relationships central to his study.

Anderson begins his biographical analysis of Little Crow with an overview of Dakota culture. According to Anderson, it is impossible to understand anything about Little Crow's life and actions unless we understand his cultural underpinnings. Anderson discusses hunting, gift giving, medicine sacks and medicine societies, Dakota religion, and the role of a chief in Dakota society (chiefs, according to Anderson, held little actual power over the warriors; it was the position of speaker that held greater power, something Little Crow found out when he led the Dakota warriors during the 1862 uprising).

Little Crow's life is truly fascinating. Anderson discusses in great depth the role of Little Crow's grandfather and father in their relations with the Americans at Fort Snelling. Little Crow's grandfather and father took an accommodationist stance towards white encroachment on Dakota lands, trying to toe the fine line between keeping the Dakota people happy while dealing with the whites. Anderson argues that Little Crow, despite the bad reputation he earned due to the uprising, was an accommodationist just like his father and grandfather. Time and time again, Little Crow worked with the white Indian agents and soldiers to try and benefit his people. Little Crow was intimately involved in signing several treaties with the government, worked hard to placate the government after the Inkpaduta affair of 1857, and tried to prevent war in 1862. That Little Crow failed in his dealings with the government and failed to stop the uprising is certainly a tragedy, but should not overshadow his attempts to do the right thing for his people. Ultimately, no Dakota leader could have prevented the coming doom.

Little Crow is best known for the destructive war against whites in 1862. Anderson covers the war and its aftermath in succinct detail. Actually, this may be the best account of the war I have read. Anderson discusses Little Crow's failure to successfully organize his warriors, his failure to gain support with mixed-blood and Upper Agency Indians, and his failure to form an Indian alliance during his exile in North Dakota and Canada. When Little Crow returned to Minnesota in 1863, he knew his time was short. Little Crow died from a gunshot wound while picking berries with his son. Little Crow's remains, horribly mutilated by angry whites, ended up on display at the Minnesota Historical Society until the 1970's, when they were finally given a proper burial.

Anderson claims that Little Crow was an opportunist, a scheming sort of politician who always helped out because he wanted to elevate his own position within Dakota society. Anderson cites as evidence newspaper interviews with Little Crow which revealed Little Crow's propensity for pithy statements and his need for constant attention. That Little Crow had a knack for oratory should come as no surprise; he was a chief, and chiefs constantly debated issues with other leaders in the tribe. But is Little Crow a politician? I don't think so, at least not in the way we perceive the term. Is it possible that newspaper and other white accounts of the time framed Little Crow in terms whites understood? After all, documents show that many whites had no real conception about the true nature of Indians in the 19th century. White relations with Indians were based on a fundamental set of assumptions, most of them racist and false. To paint Little Crow as a sort of Huey Long type teeters dangerously close to error. After all, Dakota culture emphasized communitarian values, not the sort of individualistic elevation Anderson says Little Crow sought.

Anderson ends the book with an appendix discussing Little Crow's genealogy. This section is the most difficult part of the book due to the intricate relationships within Indian families and tribes. Terms like "father" and "cousin" do not carry the same connotation in Indian culture as they do in ours. A father's brothers can all be "fathers" to an Indian, and "cousins" are even more convoluted. A genealogical chart of Little Crow's family at the back of the book makes a medieval royal house look like a nuclear family. These genealogies are necessary to back up Anderson's claim that kinship is central to tribal life.

This is a scholarly book that manages to entertain while it teaches. It is definitely a must have for those seeking a deeper understanding of the Dakota tribes, or for those interested in the Minnesota uprising of 1862. If you don't come away with some sense of admiration for Little Crow, despite his failures, you did not read the same book I did.

Smooth read, good scholarship, realistic, compassionate.
Little Crow, Spokesman For the Sioux is a reissuing of a well-researched biography of the famous Mdewakanton chief from Kaposia (Minnesota), presented complete with period drawings, illustrations, and maps as well as an exhaustive genealogy of Little Crow (Appendix 2) which helps to explain his complicated series of alliances and growth to power. Little Crow, or Ta-o-ya-te-du-ta is presented as a reluctant war leader and a persistent accommodater, politician and tribal spokesman, a position earned partly by blood and good alliances and partly by sacrifice and risk. The Mdewakanton's experience of betrayal, disillusionment, cultural displacement and dissolution in the war of 1862 is central to the life experience of Little Crow. His death is presented as a metaphor for his life and that of his people. In "The Last Campaign" it is asked why Little crow returned to the Minnesota Frontier in September of 1862, where it was almost certain that he would be killed. Though he spoke of obtaining a horse for each of his children, it seems more plausible that he willingly headed towards his death as a deliberate sacrifice, being blamed for the war by both whites and Mdewakanton Sioux.

This is the tragedy of Little Crow's life.

Faithful to the conclusions suggested by his richly varied sources, Anderson presents a realistic yet compassionate portrayal of a great Mdewakanton chief. This is a scholarly work that reads smoothly and gives good tapestry detail. Colored plates of paintings enrich the text.

Nancy Lorraine, Reviewer

No longer just a name
I live in the city of Hutchinson, MN in McLeod County. Six miles north of this city is a marker identifying the site where Little Crow was shot by a local farmer. The farmer had no idea who he was shooting at, just that it was an Indian and he would collect a bounty for his scalp.

Our city has a bronze statue of Little Crow looking out over the Crow River near the dam on the Main Street. Up until the time that I read this book, that summed up most of what I knew of Little Crow, the Sioux legend. We choose to drop the name Sioux that was given this people by our own ancestors, the Ojibwe. In our language it means "Snake". Their word for themselves is Dakota. It means "Friend".

Now I feel as though I know him as a man. I know of his character, his integrity, his family, his people. I know a great wrong was done.

At the present time there is a group of people involved in planning and hosting a reconciliation and restitution concerning the events that touched this city in regards to Taoyateduta (Little Crow) and his people. A direct descendant of Taoyateduta (meaning His Red Nation) and a direct descendant of the man who shot him will be part of the event, asking forgiveness of one another. It is never too late to say, "I'm sorry. Will you forgive?"

This book has been instrumental in opening the door to the healing of this ancient wound that is still alive in many hearts.

Lone Gunners for Jesus: Letters to Paul J. Hill
Published in Paperback by Inst for Christian Economics (1994)
Author: Gary North
Amazon base price: $3.95
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I have had several discussions with Paul Hill at Florida State Prison. I was very sympathetic to his philosophy of "defending the unborn" through the use of force. However, after reading North's refutation of Paul Hill's philosophy I can no longer subscribe to the philosophy of defensive force as espoused by Hill. North does such an excellent job of showing the Scriptural context of the various passages that Paul uses to defend his position that you cannot help but to see that using violence against abortion "doctors" has no support in Scripture. He further demonstrates that such violence actually hurts the cause of pro-life. One more thing about North's work is that after you have read his work you walk away with a much greater reverence for God and His ordained societal hierachies. Paul Hill's position paper on defensive force leaves you with little regard for God's appointed authorities-- which of course is anarchical and thus anti-Biblical.

Utterly devastating
In this book, Dr. Gary North sternly refutes the murderous philosophy of Paul J. Hill in the scholarly but uncompromising manner for which he is so loved. His position is well defined Biblically and stands on a rock-hard judicial foundation. This book is an absolute must for any Christian that has believed, even for a moment, that Hill's position was misguided but understandable.

Best of Its Kind
This is the best (and shortest) refutation available of the idea that violence against abortionists is either permissible or required. And naturally, North argues from Biblical law, and does so until he pretty much can't be refuted. Much needed today.

Whitetail Deer: Sure-fire strategies for hunting North America's most popular big-game animal (Complete Hunter)
Published in Hardcover by Creative Publishing International (1991)
Authors: Gary Clancy, Larry R. Nelson, and Cy Decosse Inc
Amazon base price: $15.37
List price: $21.95 (that's 30% off!)
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Deer Hunting Beginners Must Read!
I am new to the sport of deer hunting and have no one to guide me in learning the skills needed. I purchased this book for this reason and am glad that I did so. It covers all areas of hunting needed to begin from equipment to finding locations to tracking and gutting a deer. It is advisable even for those who are veterans to the sport and wish to increase their chances of harvesting a deer. A definite recomended reading for deer hunters.

Excellent hunting book
This is the third book from the Hunting and Fishing Library that I have read and this one was as good as the others. As a begining deer hunter this book was invaluable but an experienced hunter could benefit also. It has sections on habitat, senses, guns, and equipment. It also has great sections on tactics and even a step by step photo guide on field dressing. One thing you should expect from this series of books is great pictures and this book is no exception. If you want to hunt deer, buy this book.

This book is great! Any whitetail hunter will love it.
This book is the best! It has so much information in it. It also has lots of color pictures. This book is for anyone who hunt whitetails.

The Journals of Lewis & Clark Expedition: August 30, 1803-August 24, 1804
Published in Hardcover by Univ of Nebraska Pr (1987)
Authors: Gary E. Moulton, Meriwether Lewis, and William Clark
Amazon base price: $75.00
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Nothing Else Comes Close
The Journals of Lewis and Clark are about as fundamental a Western American treatise as you will find. Tackling this leviathan is a daunting challenge but one with great rewards. Clark copied Lewis word for word on many entries so it takes true dedication to read every word of the text. Throw in the maps, the preparatory work of Lewis and related ephemera for good measure. This will not only require a huge investment in time but several feet of book space. At [the price] per volume you will also limit out your credit card. Is it worth it? No other work can provide the background for understanding the ensuing growth of the West. Every single day of the journey is accounted for and there are tediously detailed accounts of the geography and navigational coordinates. Be prepared for some of the most creative spelling ever recorded. Once read it is an experience never to be forgotten and you will not regret the effort.

Recommended by best selling author
The author of the most-recent biography of Meriwether Lewis recommends this series by Moulton as the best available collection of the Journals.

The Journals of the Lewis & Clark Expedition: July 28-November 1, 1805 (Vol 5)
Published in Hardcover by Univ of Nebraska Pr (1988)
Authors: Meriwether Lewis, William Clark, and Gary E. Moulton
Amazon base price: $75.00
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Previous Review Is Incorrect
During the period covered by this volume, Lewis and Clark were beyond the portage around Great Falls. During the time described in the subtitle to this volume, July 28 - November 1, 1805, L&C were leaving Three Forks, crossing the continental divide, and meeting the Shoshone Indians, with whom they traded for horses with which to cross the Bitteroot Mountains. The portage around Great Falls is described in Volume 4 of Moulton's edition of the journals.

A "MUST" read!
This volume details the thoughts of Lewis and Clark, and others as they determine which major waterway to follow to the Great Falls of the Missouri, their first significant obstacle. The portage around the great falls is more than they imagined, and is explained in great detail. It explores the many new discoveries in the interior of what is now central and western Montana. This volume also further expounds the growing problems with the unpredictable 'white bear', and the harshness of spring and summer weather in Montana.

The Legend of the Red Horse Cavern
Published in Paperback by Yearling Books (1994)
Author: Gary Paulsen
Amazon base price: $3.99
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This book was so great I mean I never read a better book.
As I close my eyes I feel like I'm in the the cave with Willam "Little Bear" Tucker and Sarah. We're trying to escape these crooks who want to kill us with there guns. I really like this book beacause it has so many adventures within the Sacremento Mountain Range. If I was Sarah or William I would be so scared of these two crooks. But if William wasn't that smart they probaly would have been killed. I think that it doesn't matter what age you are. It also doesn't matter if you are a guy or girl, it matters if you like adventure.

Adventure Underground!!
Caves are no place to play around in as Will and Sarah soon find out. Good action and adventure in dark winding passages underground. The next best thing to being there is reading about it. Buy this book! For another great book about underground stories try, Steward's "Tales of Dirt, Danger, and Darkness."

This Was the Place the Darker Side of Mormon Zion: Manifest Destiny's Mad March Across Northern Ute Indian Territory and Skullduggery in Their Final
Published in Hardcover by 1stBooks Library (2002)
Author: Gary Weicks
Amazon base price: $33.95
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Accurate historical account of Anglo and Ute interaction
Having grown up in Utah my brain was filled with positive stories of Mormon and American Indian relations. It would not until many years later, when I started researching local American Indian information, that my eyes were widely open to the myth of my childhood education.
I met Gary Weicks several years ago when he was compiling a manuscript from the intensive research he had done. It started as a project for a Forest Service archeological dig in the Strawberry Valley. He was researching for information on the Army maneuvers held there in 1888. However, it became very intriguing to him to read of the Ute interactions that were written in Army reports. It took him on a new adventure researching the history of the Ute and this adventure took many fascinating twists.
As I read the book it seemed there was a new twist every few pages. It definitely gives you a new look on Ute and Anglo interactions. I believe a book like this is way overdue. It's time to bury the myths of the past and teach the true facts of Utah history.
This is a must read book for anyone who is interested in the old west, military, Mormon, Utah or Native American history. The book also spends time telling about the Lost Rhoades Mines Legend and the early miners of the area. It reveals the comprehensive story of a previously unpublished chapter in Utah history.
Weicks states that, "For over 400 years before the Mormon arrival in 1847, many of the Northern Utes and their preto historic ancestors lived in relative peace and stability within the territory currently encompassing much of Utah. In less than twenty years of settlement by the Brethren in their newest Land of Zion, the collective authorities of the Mormon Church, Bureau of Indian Affairs and U.S. Army convinced Congress to officially dispossess these Northern Utes of all their traditional and best lands except for the sprawling and considerably barren wastes of the Uintah Reservation located in northeastern Utah. By Church Prophet and President Brigham Young's own accounting, several bands of these original first contact Indians - through starvation, pestilence and white inspired epidemics - had experienced somewhere between a 90% to 99% mortal attrition rate in their numbers by 1867."
He goes on to say that, "In the mid-1870s Brigham Young, searching for new areas to colonize with land-seeking church members, began a policy that actively encouraged the Utes to depopulate their reservation where treatment by BIA officials over the years was poor and inefficient. Through the Church leader's ability to significantly control both Indian movements and affairs in Utah, Brigham began quiet efforts to induce Congress to throw open the Uintah Reservation to homesteading. Though the soil was largely infertile, the valuable water, timber and grazing resources of the country were coveted by the surrounding Latter Day faithful as well as the large cattle companies."
Brigham Youngs death slowed down this progress. Problems in Colorado with the Ute pushed many Colorado Ute tribes into Utah in the late 1870s.
In the 1880s mining interests on the Uintah and Uncompahgre Reservations gave another push to move the Utes off their reservations. The depression of 1893 renewed this push.
Weicks said, "In 1897, when the great Klondike Gold Rush began in Canada, Americans were caught up in the frenzy of seizing the moment and embracing the chance of renewed wealth regardless of the ravages of the lingering depression. Additional strikes in Alaska in 1899 and 1902 inspired an entire nation to get swept away in the gold fever so prevalent, especially in the West. Old mining tales, such as the Lost Rhoades Mines Legend centered on the Uintah Reservation, were resurrected and received serious attention throughout Utah and surrounding states. These wild stories of incredible riches sustained additional forward momentum to throw open the Uintah Reservation shortly after the turn of the century."
I found This Was the Place: The Darker Side of Mormon Zion to be written passionately and with a folksy wit making it enjoyable reading. It is written in a way that makes it easygoing and hard to lay down.

History of a people in turmoil
This Was the Place is the story of the fate of the Indians of Utah and Colorado in the 1800s. Like many Native American tribes, the Utes, Goshutes, and related tribes, were pushed from one piece of land to another, made promises by the government that were never kept, and were ignored when they were hungry and poor and their ability to feed themselves had been taken away from them.

Weicks gives a well-researched, detailed account of the machinations of government, civilians, military, and Indians as all jockeyed for position. He has used primary and secondary sources, and interviews with historians and experts of today. It's an intelligent accounting of who was there and the sequence of events.

Anyone interested in the history of Utah and Colorado, the tribes living in that area, and relations between white and Indian, will find this book of great interest.

Unholy Spirits: Occultism and New Age Humanism
Published in Hardcover by Dominion Pr (1988)
Authors: Gary North, Gordon J. Wenham, and David Chilton
Amazon base price: $19.95
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Well researched analysis of occultism.
Every Christian ought to read Gary North's "Unholy Spirits." Within our context we probably do not encounter too many psychic healings, spontaneous combustions, witch hexings and the like. North assembles an impressive amount of research (his chapter on the sorcerer's world was particularly intriguing) in a convincing fashion. By the end of the book, one should be convinced in the existence and power of evil spirits. North does an excellent job of critiquing the rationalism of modern scientists, who refuse to take seriously the reality of the paranormal. Rationalism, as Cornelius Van Til argued, has a secret treaty with irrationalism, and North proves the existence of this treaty. Both sides (rationalism/irrationalism), although they often have internal squabbles, are against God and His Anointed. History often manifests the oscillation between these two systems of thought, and this is due to man's propensity to refuse to embrace biblical religion. The 1960s and its infatuation with the occult mark a transitory stage into the irrational, Van Til's "integration into the void." Being a man who refuses to fight something with nothing, North offers his readers the only good alternative to the coming (seemingly) world of irrational, chaotic humanism--covenantal obedience to every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God. "Unholy Spirits" is a fine read. Be sure to follow North's warnings, however, in your study of this often macabre subject.

A unique, groundbreaking book
This is intellectual detective work at its best. The forward alone (The Crisis of Western Rationalism) is just about worth the price of the book. North follows the rationalistic viewpoint to lits logical conclusion, showing why it helps foment occultism. He also shows how orthodox Christianity has the only answer to problems unanswerable by devotees of science or the occult. But it's hardly a sermon. None the likes of which you've heard before. It's a full course meal for the mind on every page. It was through the reading of this book that I was introduced to the writings of Jacques Vallee, because North dedicates some analysis to Vallee's work. He believes that Vallee is on target about UFO's being a control mechanism of deception, but wrong about what they really are. At any rate there is one thing you will not be when reading this book....bored.

Father Water, Mother Woods: Essays on Fishing and Hunting in the North Woods
Published in Library Binding by Bt Bound (1999)
Authors: Gary Paulsen and Ruth Wright Paulsen
Amazon base price: $10.72
List price: $13.40 (that's 20% off!)
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Review of Father Water, Mother Woods
Paulsen writes about seasons in his hometown being determined by types of fish caught down by the dam, under the Ninth street bridge, or in frozen lakes, and not by dates on calendars. When fishing ends, hunting is the obsession for Paulsen and friends he calls "orphans of the woods." He explains, "When we were in the woods or fishing the rivers and lakes our lives didn't hurt."

This book is a nature lover's choice. Paulsen writes of growing up in a small Minnesota town and he intertwines this town's life with stories of adventurous boys. Two of my favorite essays are "Running the River" and "Bow Hunting." The first is a hilarious tale of an overplanned camping trip gone wrong when the boat, full of supplies and boys, sinks, forcing the boys to walk back to town. "Bow Hunting" is a coming of age essay in which a boy, after killing his first doe, poignantly describes his realization that while his life will continue, hers will not.

Bringing The Outside In
This book truly brings nature to your fingertips. As a reader, I felt as if I was out in the wild, experiencing everything of which Paulsen wrote. With the descriptive settings and easy-to-relate-to tales, Paulsen makes the reader feel as if they have entered the woods along with the characters in the story. The essays on fishing and hunting in the northern woods are definitely his best work yet! This book is easy to follow, yet has very deep and interesting accounts.
I recommend this illustration to anyone who enjoys the great outdoors. If you want to learn about cold, winter morning fishing excursions, or hot, summer days in the woods, this is the perfect book to help fulfill your curiosity. Father Water Mother Woods is worth your time of reading and is definitely a classic.

Excellent Book
This is an excellent book. The book is written in such detail that it is easy to imagine yourself being there. This is a great book for those of any age. It will bring back some good memories of your childhood.

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