Review – ‘Across the Waters of Time: Pliny Remembered’
For the full review please see my blog article at http://richardabbott.authorsxpress.com/2013/08/20/review-across-the-waters-of-time-pliny-remembered/ - these are short extracts taken from the full article highlighting the main points.
I came away from Ken Parejko’s Across the Waters of Time: Pliny Remembered with very mixed feelings. On the plus side – and these are very large plus features – this is a beautifully conceived book, with a powerful and compelling imaginative sweep and some marvellously lyrical passages of writing. The presentation of Pliny’s interior thought-world, and its evolution through his lifetime, is splendid, and the historical events Ken chooses to illuminate this come over as pivotal to Pliny, and in some cases centrally important to the entire first century AD. It is a book which can be highly recommended in these grounds alone.
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Sadly, though, the book has been finished very carelessly. There are a great many spelling and grammar errors, accidental use of similar words (swapping her for here, and such like), and problems of formatting. There is even an email address at one point in my version, presumably dumped in by an auto-correction feature of the software Ken used. I can easily live with a few of these kinds of slips, but there were so many that they became a serious impediment.
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For depth and sweep of ideas, and for the way in which Ken has captured the inner world of a great and influential thinker, Across the Waters of Time deserves five stars. But the faults of execution, and the sad neglect of what could have been a beautiful text, mean that I can only give it four. Readers who are willing to live with the flaws will, I believe, discover a fascinating tale here.