13 July 2010

Spectator's Susan Hill recommends The Voyage of The Beagle

for summer reading.

The Spectator is a British conservative political magazine and is often a very good read, even if some of its columnists do occasionally get some intelligent designery and antievolution comment through its otherwise rational editorial net.

So good to see writer and Spectator blogger Susan Hill banging the drum for more people to read one of the greats of exploration and science: The Voyage of the Beagle.

Not everyone wants escapism in summer but escape, yes – in 1831 Charles Darwin escaped by sea and wrote a journal about it, The Voyage of the Beagle. If you expect it to be dry as dust scientific prose, you will be astonished at how vivid and fresh it is.. Darwin writes with life and colour. His encounters with all manner of wild life, much of which he promptly kills and preserves in the most non-PC manner, are extraordinary and the people he meets are written about in the same manner – as species under his microscope. This is a great classic true-adventure story.

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