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There are currently 3 reader reviews for Over the Edge of the World
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Very well written. Begreen knows what he's talking about and you can tell with the great detail and arrangement of facts. Chapters are brought to their conclusion on how they are important and what everything means at their end. Highly recommended.
Does a history book have this much right to be a fun page-turner? Yes, and Laurence Bergreen exceeds to great story telling, marvelous adventure, creating a just plain enjoyable read. Taken either as history or read like a novel this is an amazingly detailed telling of three year voyage which ended in 1522 with only one ship and 18 survivors out of the original five ships and 260 who left Spain with this Portuguese Captain. Even the early chapters, which tell how a Portuguese ends up leading the Spanish fleet, is a marvelous story. But in the end, what stays with you is the shear terror, boredom, disease, and strange island customs all left for us to enjoy because of basically one man, Antonio Pigafetta who was taken on to chronicle the voyage and some how managed to survive mutiny, the voyage through the strait, the native peoples defense of their territories (which resulted in the death of Magellan himself), and in the end being cast aside for a more “official version”. Bergreen could not have told his story without Pigafetta and Pigafetta could not have found a better writer to bring his story to a modern audience. I highly recommend this great read!
I thoroughly enjoyed this book for several reasons. It is well written; that is, it keeps the reader's attention. It is exciting and at the same time factual and historical. I gained a new appreciation for the early explorers. Not only were they exploring the unknown; they knew there was a very good chance they would not return. I am 65 years old, but I highly recommend this book for teens on up. Now, for me, Magellan is no longer just a long ago explorer that the Strait of Magellan is named for. To know his adventure is a memorable experience.