King Solomon’s Mines

KingsSolomonsMinesSuggested by Brad Nelson • Three men trek to the remote African interior in search of a lost friend – and reach, at the end of a perilous journey, an unknown land cut off from the world, where terrible dangers threaten anyone who ventures near the spectacular diamond mines of King Solomon.
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5 Responses to King Solomon’s Mines

  1. Kung Fu Zu says:

    I just finished reading this and if I wanted to sound like a reviewer I would say it was a “cracking good read.”

    Seriously, it was a very good read, period. The story flows and kept my interest at all times. Unlike in many period pieces, there are no silly, unbelievable coincidences used like a deus ex machina to gloss over otherwise near impossible occurrences and weak writing.

    The story is interesting and believable, while the characters are likeable.

    If for no other reason, one should read the book to see how much better it is than the various films which have been loosely based on it.

    Most especially, the Allan Quartermain of the book is nothing like the character in the movies. Not young, tall and glamorous, he is rather oldish, small, wiry and has short grey hair. He has years of experience under his belt and has gained a fair amount of wisdom through hard lessons.

    Thanks for recommending this book.

    • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

      You are most welcome. I’m glad you liked that one, Mr. Kung. That shows good taste! 🙂

      Sincerely, we all have different tastes. That much is obvious. But the creme tends to rise to the top. And I try to write reviews that are honest, heap praise when it is due, and pull no punches. And from your description of this book, it sounds exactly like what I would write. Or vice versa.

      After reading “King Solomon’s Mines” I then went on to what can more or lest be viewed as a sequel: “Allan Quatermain.” This was a rollicking bit of fun as well, not wholly dissimilar to the first book. Quatermain’s buddies head off for a good adventure while keeping that stiff British upper lip. It may stretch credulity here and there regarding some of the relationships that spring up. But I think if you liked “King Solomon’s Mines” you will also like “Allan Quatermain.”

      And good points about the movie versions not capturing this man in the least, although I like Sean Connery’s portrayal in “The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen.” It did at least emphasize that he was a very good shot.

      I also thoroughly enjoyed (probably more than the two books above) the novella, “Maiwa’s Revenge.” It’s such a “Let’s go out in Africa and have an adventure” type of book. Lots of easy and good fun to read and a satisfying ending.

      Right now I’m stuck at about 3/4 of the way through “Marie,” which is next in the series. I’m very disappointed with this one. The villain is a cliche all the way through and Quatermain (even though he is a young man) in no way acts intelligent or brave, as is his usual character, at least regarding his main adversary.

      Haggard makes the grave mistake of twisting Quatermain’s character (and just common sense) like a puppet in order to keep the rivalry between him and his foe alive when, in character, Quatermain would have dispatched him long ago. This book stretches the suspension of disbelief. I may finish it yet, but it’s a bit of a bore.

      • Timothy Lane says:

        I haven’t read any of Haggard’s books (though did see the 1960s movie version of She with Ursula Andress as Ayesha). But I will note that the writer S. M. Stirling is a big fan of the adventures of that era, and thus as an SF writer seeks to find excuses to write similar sorts of books, often with considerable success.

        • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

          I may man-up and finish “Marie.” The opening 1/3 of the book is terrific. But then it bogs down into one of those “villains who won’t die or go away” books. I just got tired of it. But I should finish that first before moving on in the series, including “She.”

      • Kung Fu Zu says:

        I’ve already started the follow-up book, “Allan Quartermain”. I found the intro written by Quartermain about his deceased son to be very sad and believable. And believability is one sign of good writing.

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