Friday, January 9, 2015

Wild West

I have enjoyed reading Mark Twain and thought I would read a bit of his history in this semi-autobiographical book published in 1872.
It starts with a stage coach journey 'out west' to accompany his brother to a new government posting in Nevada. 
He finds no shortage of adventure and with his sense of humour injected into almost all of his experiences, it is an enjoyable read as well as an historical one. 
He was bound and determined to find wealth one way or another and his stories of mining, gold and silver exploration, land speculation, and sightseeing are more than interesting. 
His adventures lead him to the beginnings of a career in writing as he travels first to San Francisco and later to the Sandwich Islands. (Hawaii)  
Yet in all of these adventures and ventures, he never found substantial wealth until he went on the lecture tour and began speaking about his travels.   
I came away from the book with a renewed interest in the history of the wild west, a rudimentary knowledge of the mining industry and gold rushes, and an appreciation for the rugged and rough way of life that was the norm for living in the west in those days.
I recommend this book as both entertainment and as an education in history. And I guarantee you will get a real chuckle out of his story of getting lost in the snow storm.
3 1/2 stars 

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