Kon Tiki (Common Reader Classic Bestseller Series)

( 29 )

Overview

Originally published in 1950, Kon-Tiki has earned a place as one of the classic adventure stories of modern times. At last count, Thor Heyerdahl's unforgettable narrative has been translated into sixty-seven languages and has sold more than thirty million copies internationally.

Who could have foreseen such wild success for a book about six men crossing more than 4,000 miles of the Pacific on a balsa log raft, a voyage undertaken in order to ...
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Kon-Tiki

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Overview

Originally published in 1950, Kon-Tiki has earned a place as one of the classic adventure stories of modern times. At last count, Thor Heyerdahl's unforgettable narrative has been translated into sixty-seven languages and has sold more than thirty million copies internationally.

Who could have foreseen such wild success for a book about six men crossing more than 4,000 miles of the Pacific on a balsa log raft, a voyage undertaken in order to float an obscure theory concerning transoceanic contact between the civilizations of South America and Polynesia? Part of the book's immediate and enduring appeal can be traced to its romantic portrayal of scientific investigation: a maverick thinker conceives a theory at odds with accepted wisdom and sets out on a task demanding enormous courage in order to prove its possibility. And yet it is by the adventure itself—one hundred and one days of difficult, dangerous, and exhilarating journeying in the imagined path of stone age seafarers—that the author and his colleagues won the hearts and minds of countless readers. To read Kon-Tiki is to experience, with undimmed wonder, the thrill of endeavor and both the harsh and serene beauties of the natural world.

Norwegian ethnologist and adventurer Thor Heyerdahl (1914-2002) became world famous in the wake of his 1947 Kon-Tiki expedition. His books chronicling later expeditions include Aku-Aku: The Secret of Easter Island, Fatu-Hiva: Back to Nature, The Ra Expeditions, and Early Man and the Ocean.

"The whole story—from its beginnings in Heyerdahl's theory, through the long voyage and in the experiences after he was ashore—is as great an adventure as it is possible to imagine. That means it's as good as Robinson Crusoe, plus the fact that Kon-Tiki is true."
Chicago Sun

"This is an enthralling book, and I don't think I can be very far off in calling it the most absorbing sea tale of our time."
—Hamilton Basso, The New Yorker

"This review can easily be written in four words: 'Wow! What a book!' It has spine chilling, nerve tingling, spirit lifting adventure on every page . . . . It is the fiction of a Conrad or a Melville brought to reality. It might be added that the writing is of itself worthy of either pen."
Chicago Sunday Tribune
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781579124403
  • Publisher: Black Dog & Leventhal Publishers, Inc.
  • Publication date: 1/3/2005
  • Series: Common Reader Classic Bestseller Series
  • Pages: 272
  • Product dimensions: 5.68 (w) x 8.56 (h) x 1.02 (d)

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 29 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(15)

4 Star

(5)

3 Star

(5)

2 Star

(2)

1 Star

(2)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 29 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 26, 2007

    Difficult Voyage by Brave Men

    This is a piece of history well told. Everyone said they would die in the attempt, but they arrived where they set out to go and proved what they wanted to prove.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 7, 2004

    Adventure Story with Lives on the Line

    A tale of bold explorers risking life and liberty for an adventure and to prove an historical hypothesis. This is a great story that reflects 'freedom of spirit' in the world. Refreshing in this day of lazy, arm-chair, Monday morning quarterbacks.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 23, 2004

    Decent adventure book

    The premise of the book is very interesting (how the Pacific Islands were settled) but the book itself grew a little repetitive. I lost count of how many times a large fish came to investigate the raft, or a fish jumped or swam up onto the raft and became a meal. I would have liked the book more if it offered some insight into what the men on board were thinking. This was really not touched upon, instead I felt I was reading the same chapter over and over again.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 9, 2004

    A good read

    Kon Tiki is good read. Notice I said 'good'. This book gave me mixed feelings. At times it dragged on a little, yet at times, it really picks up. I am in the 8th grade, so thats probably why I wasn't as into it as other people. This is a good sea adventure book, unlike Treasure Island. Overall, I liked this book and thought it was a cool story. I would give it 3 1/2 stars, but in a way, it deserves 4. I hope you like this book, and I hope you won't get bored. :-)

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 18, 2002

    Adventure, Adventure, Adventure!!!

    You want adventure? You want risk? You want thrills? You want a mind-out-of-body experience while reading? Then, by all means, read KON-TIKI! No one believed he could do it. They all said he was crazy. He didn't even know how to swim! But he sailed across the pacific and proved his controversial theory. I've read it 4 times and will undoubtedly read it 4 times more - at least. It's an amazing, thrilling read. Please don't miss this book. It's one of those books you never forget.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 19, 1999

    It's not just for guys!

    After a somewhat slow beginning, Kon Tiki is hard to put down. The book takes almost a documentary approach with Heyerdahl spending almost no time developing characters or leading the reader to extract a theme or moral. Just as well! The action is sustaining with ample discussions of storms, sea creatures, and challenges with the raft. Read the book and then remind yourself that it is a true story that took place during the Truman presidency. No sonar and accompanying yachts here--just pure adventure! Get a copy with photographs; they're terrific.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 3, 2014

    Kon Tiki is the tale of how Heyerdahl and five other courageous

    Kon Tiki is the tale of how Heyerdahl and five other courageous men set out to prove the origins of the Polynesian people, conquering the Pacific Ocean using only a raft. It is full of experiences and exploits that make one believe that the ocean in the Life of Pi is realistic. Heyerdahl expertly recounts the true ingeniousness of the primitive people's construction of the balsa raft with their own replica, and its astounding sea-worthiness. Kon Tiki is a whale of a tale that does not disappoint. I recommend this book to anyone who is in need of an excellent non-fiction read,  and I especially recommend this book to those with interests in anthropological studies. 

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 1, 2014

    Kon Tiki is an excellent book describing the adventure of six me

    Kon Tiki is an excellent book describing the adventure of six men crossing  the pacific in a raft.   I had to read a non-fiction book for 12th grade English, and Kon Tiki was no disappointment. It was a bit slow at times, but I recommend it to anyone who loves a good adventure. I highly recommend this book to people interested in anthropological studies, as Thor presents a solid case for his argument regarding the origins of the Polynesian peoples.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 3, 2014

    Highly recommended

    I read this many years ago and could hardly wait to get back to it. It is one of the best true adventure tales of the ages and I have given a copy to one of my grandchildren for Xmas along with another of Thor Heyerdahl's books. He is the best.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 18, 2013

    Fabulous!!!

    I am in the middle of the book and am so excited even though I know the outcome. It is beautifullly written. So uplifting. I highly recommend it to anyone eho has an adventurous heart. I recently saw the new movie of the same name and enjoyed it so much that I had to read the book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 29, 2013

    Kon tiki

    I first read this book when it was first published by the origional, author, i prefer that edition, thor was an interesting man who was not afraid to test his theories even when he could not be sure of the outcome

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 8, 2013

    Angel

    *sits on the ground staring at the sky emotionless*

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 10, 2012

    AWESOME!

    THIS IS AN AWESOME ADVENTURE TAKING PLACE ON THE SURFACE OF THE PACIFIC.

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  • Posted March 24, 2009

    Thor Heyerdahl's Kon-Tiki: A Sailing Adventure

    Kon-Tiki is the tale of Thor Heyerdahl and his crew mates, who attempt to cross the Pacific Ocean in a raft in an attempt to duplicate a similar journey by Polynesians. Their journey spanned 101 days and they ended up crossing 4,300 nautical miles, and ended when they reached the Tuamotu Islands, part of the French Polynesians on August 7th, 1947. A few themes are prominent in the book, namely exploration and as curiosity. The crew embarks on an epic journey with technology as advanced as the Polynesians, only in an effort to prove that it was possible. Their journey, months in length is a remarkable example of perseverance, as well. Overall, it was a reasonable good read. The beginning was easy to get into, and the crews' travels in Peru to create the raft were very interesting. Once the trip was underway, though, the book turned towards monotony, with days and days of nothing noteworthy happening except fish and squid sightings. Some information seemed irrelevant. On the plus side, Heyerdahl creates vivid pictures of the environment, both on clear days of sailing as well as the mid-ocean storms that were endured. However, characters are relatively undeveloped aside from what can be learned from their actions, and it was hard to create connections.
    If you are interested in exploration and are fascinated by the ocean, this book is for you. If you are interested in wildlife, you will enjoy the numerous accounts of fishing, whales, squids and other sea creatures. Avoid it if you prefer short and to-the-point stories, or if you think character development it critical to understanding. Also avoid Kon-Tiki if you are a strong animal rights advocate, as many different kinds of fish are eaten. Likewise, if you get sea sick, you might find it necessary to skip certain passages. If you have read this, you might enjoy cruise ship brochures, ocean related documentaries and beach novels. Also, if you find yourself short of time, there is a movie based on the book, though it is exactly recent. In summery, this book is deserving of a 3 out of 5: A predictable, almost documentary like read that tells an interesting tale of an epic journey.

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 9, 2008

    I Also Recommend:

    a great book

    this book proves that the indians were able to go all throegh the pacific without tech

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 24, 2004

    ouch

    while reading this book i thought my eyes were going to spontauiously burst into flames. It was like someone shoving trash into my eyes over and over again

    0 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 29, 2004

    great read

    after a couple of chapters you wont be able to put it down, its a great read and will certainly make you want to head for the nearest island. to anyone who dreams of the palms and silky sand of the south pacific this will be your book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 30, 2003

    terrible

    This book was beyond boring. If you would like to fall asleep, and suffer throughout reading a book, Kon-Tiki should be your choice

    0 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 18, 2013

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted February 24, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

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