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AmySea

AmySea

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Ride a Pale Horse
Helen MacInnes
The Samurai's Wife
Laura Joh Rowland
Cradle of Gold: The Story of Hiram Bingham, a Real-Life Indiana Jones, and the Search for Machu Picchu - Christopher Heaney 2.5 stars. It's not that I didn't think this book was interesting--it was--especially the first half. But the print was itty bitty, and that in itself limited my enjoyment of the book. My eyes hurt after time spent reading this work. No fun.

Once the story began talking about the political and legal battles that went on between Peru, Yale, and Hiram Bingham, somehow things got a little jumbled and hard to follow, and I did feel my interest falling off a bit. I was a little disappointed in this. I enjoy political machinations, and legal battles over archaeology are also intriguing. But something was missing from those aspects of the story in this book. I wish I could put my finger on what that was.

I didn't come away from this book particularly admiring Hiram Bingham or the individuals and institutions responsible for bringing Inca artifacts and bones out of Peru and into the United States. Sure, the discovery was cool, and good on Bingham for pursuing his dreams, but because of the way this story was told, I couldn't help but see echoes of the greed, colonialism, racism, and treasure hunting that the Spaniards inflicted upon the Inca empire in the 16th century. I ended up finding the morals of the people in this book to be a little bit, um, "flexible," and a little bit distasteful. It was a different time, though, and different mindsets prevailed. That is sometimes hard to remember when reading a book about history.