Non-Fiction Review of Here is Where by Andrew Carroll

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Here is Where by Andrew Carroll

Age Range: Adult

Series: None

Genre: Non-fiction/history

Paperback: 512 pages
 
Publisher: Three Rivers Press; Reprint edition (May 6, 2014)

Source: Blogging for Books for review

My Rating: 5 of 5 stars

About the Book:

Here Is Where chronicles Andrew Carroll’s eye-opening – and at
times hilarious — journey across America to find and explore unmarked
historic sites where extraordinary moments occurred and remarkable
individuals once lived. Sparking the idea for this book was Carroll’s
visit to the spot where Abraham Lincoln’s son was saved by the brother
of Lincoln’s assassin. Carroll wondered, How many other unmarked
places are there where intriguing events have unfolded and that we walk
past every day, not realizing their significance?
To answer that
question, Carroll ultimately trekked to every region of the country —
by car, train, plane, helicopter, bus, bike, and kayak and on foot.
Among the things he learned:

*Where in North America the oldest sample of human DNA was discovered

* Where America’s deadliest maritime disaster took place, a calamity worse than the fate of the Titanic

*Which virtually unknown American scientist saved hundreds of millions of lives

*Which famous Prohibition agent was the brother of a notorious gangster

*How a 14-year-old farm boy’s brainstorm led to the creation of television

Featured prominently in Here Is Where are an abundance of firsts (from
the first use of modern anesthesia to the first cremation to the first
murder conviction based on forensic evidence); outrages (from riots to massacres to forced sterilizations); and breakthroughs (from the invention, inside a prison, of a revolutionary weapon; to the recovery, deep in the Alaskan tundra, of a super-virus; to the building of the rocket that made possible space travel). Here Is Where
is thoroughly entertaining, but it’s also a profound reminder that the
places we pass by often harbor amazing secrets and that there are
countless other astonishing stories still out there, waiting to be
found. 

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About the Author:

Andrew Carroll is the executive director of the American Poetry &
Literacy Project, a national nonprofit organization based in Washington,
D.C., that promotes literacy and encourages a greater public awareness
of poetry. The author of several books, he lives in Washington, D.C.

Marian Wright Edelman is the founder and president of the Children’s Defense Fund, as well as the author of the New York Times #1 bestseller The Measure of Our Success.

Praise for Here is Where:

“Readers should fasten their seatbelts…Carroll’s explorations are strangely compelling—I started wondering what history had disappeared from my own neighborhood. Here Is Where could be the basis for a cool Google Glass app—mash
it up with GPS coordinates and let it populate the spaces around us
with ghosts, both good and evil. We may lose a bit of ourselves by
outsourcing our imagination. But we may lose even more by letting time
erode the history of our land.”–Wall Street Journal

“Carroll
takes readers on an eye-opening and entertaining grand tour of America
in this lively exploration of lesser-known or overlooked historical
sites.
From birthplaces to gravesites and high points to low, from
those that inspired inventions to those that sparked change, he leaves
no stone unturned or landmark unvisited…Part travelogue, part history, this book should be required reading for anyone interested in America’s past.”
–Publishers Weekly (starred review)

My Thoughts:

This book is brilliant. It’s a combination of the first hand account of
the author’s travels and the forgotten history he dug up. At first, I
wasn’t very fond of the travelogue parts, but as I continued to read, I
grew to like the author’s journey as much as the historical stories he discovered . He found some fascinating information that made me wonder how such
events have been forgotten.

While he doesn’t come across as preachy, Carroll does include his
opinion and bits of insight on some things. He mentions how it’s
important for us to remember our history, even the bad things so that we
don’t make the same mistakes repeatedly. Carroll’s accounts are
touching, educational, and insightful. He unearthed the history of our
country that has sat on the sidelines. This isn’t a history of
presidents, tyrants, or the wealthy. It’s a history of scandal,
innovation, tragedy, triumph, and events that have shaped this nation
into what it is today.

I would highly recommend this book to anyone that wants to learn more about American history.

Content: Some violence and mild language.

Source: I received a copy of this book from Blogging for Books in exchange for an honest review.

5 STARS

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