I picked this up for bookclub after picking it up abs putting it down many times. I was pleasantly surprised by how quickly I got into the story.
I felt like I needed a spreadsheet to keep track of all of the characters. There were so many characters whose lives were intertwined with the others that it was difficult to follow at some points. I had to put the book down and try to backtrack to get myself back on track.
I was going to rate this book higher, but when it came to the ending, I just couldn’t justify a higher rating. The story was great and kept my attention, but the ending just fell flat.
I enjoyed the history in this book. It actually told more about the island than I anticipated. I was disappointed that there weren’t photos, only illustrations. I understand that a lot of the landscaping and the buildings have changed over time, but current photos next to the artist’s rendition would have been nicer and would have given a clearer idea of what the changes are.
The book would be good for anyone wishing to know the history and landscape of the island.
Back in November 2019, the Occupation on Alcatraz had its fiftieth birthday. The above linked article shows a movie about the Occupation. The library did a lot of programs celebrating the anniversary. I learned a lot during the anniversary period.
We went to the Grand Canyon and did the full self guided tour. The zipline area was closed for the winter, but we weren’t planning on doing that anyway. This was the first stop. All of the stores were closed, so we moved on quickly. We got back on the shuttle bus and moved along toward the next stop. The shuttle driver pointed out the head of the woman kissing the nose of the horse’s head. I am terrified of heights so when we got to the next stop, I did my best to take a look at the canyon. I did more looking than photo taking. We went on the Skywalk. We couldn’t take personal belongings with us, so we couldn’t take photos. The Skywalk is in the background here. It was three inches of glass that you walked on to look down into the canyon. I hung on to the edge and did ok until a group of people walked by me quickly and it bounced a little. I am glad I did it, but it was scary. This was the view from our table at lunch. Gorgeous.
The above linked article talks about the Native American Occupation of Alcatraz from the eyes of those who were there. Not a lot is written about the Occupation, but more and more people are talking about it and writing about it. I feel that it is a part of history, and we should be able to learn about it. I am glad that it is happening now, but it really shouldn’t have taken fifty years to get the information out in the open.
The above linked article talks about the little known first occupation of Alcatraz, 5 years before the one that most people know about. It was a small occupation and didn’t last long, but it planted the idea for the future occupation.
The San Francisco library is having exhibits honoring the 1969 native American occupation. I went to two of the talks, and I looked at two of the exhibits. There are two more that I haven’t gotten to. I am learning a lot that I wasn’t expecting to learn. I am amazed that a lot of this stuff wasn’t taught in school, and if it was, it was taught with a biased slant.
I plan on going back and finishing the other two exhibits.
I found this at the Sunset library. I need to look into it, too.
I have found all of this information fascinating. History that I had no knowledge of.
The library is doing a series of talks on Native Americans this month, honoring the fifty year anniversary of the occupation of Alcatraz coming up on November 20.
Six women spoke on tattoos of indigenous people, and what the tattoos mean. Only five ended up on the biography sheet. All six were fascinating.
There’s a documentary coming out soon, called Skindigenous which is about the research these women did and the teaching they continuously give to pass down the information to their children and grandchildren, and other indigenous people.
One of the women actually did her research in the Philippines, so it was a little different than the other women, but was still fascinating.
I love that the library gives a voice to people who I wouldn’t normally hear from. If I hadn’t gone to this talk, it would be information that I’d never have learned.