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The Alchemist's Dream by John Wilson

The Alchemist's Dream

by John Wilson

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I started reading this book with the boys but it got quite graphic, so I finished it on my own. I liked the story, fiction and non-fiction woven together. It was especially interesting because as I read this story about explorers looking for a Northwest Passage, I had friends sailing it with their family. Incredible. ( )
  mamathiessen | Oct 30, 2009 |
A fresh, intriguing hypothesis to the solution of the mystery surrounding Henry Hudson's last fatal voyage. This is a story of Henry Hudson but much more so a story of Robert Bylot, an obscure explorer, and John Dee, a geographer and occultist. The tale of how these three people's lives may have intertwined is fascinating. The book does start off very slow, there is a heavy hand of history and geography to set the scene which borders on being pedantic. I think the reader would have been better served with an illustrated map on the endpapers and really am dismayed that one wasn't included. However, the author manages to provoke our interest in the characters enough until the mid-point of the novel where the plot line picks up and the reading flows much easier. This is a Young Adult novel and suitable for the upper age range as this realistic portrait of life on the high-seas includes very graphic and gory battle scenes. Overall, this is a fascinating topic and a glimpse into an era where the boundaries between science and magic were blurry. Recommended. ( )
1 vote ElizaJane | Oct 20, 2007 |
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Elderly maritime explorer Robert Bylot remembers his search with Henry Hudson for a passage to Cathay in 1611 and his tutelage by the mysterious Dr. John Dee in late-sixteenth-century London.

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