Megaliths, dinosaurs and flying boats (book reviews by Steve Earles)

Spirits in Stone: The Secrets of Megalithic America

Written by Glenn Kreisberg

Forward by Graham Hancock

We traditionally associate megalithic stone structures with places like Ireland (Newgrange). France (Carnac), and England (Stonehenge), yet there are in actuality hundreds of megalithic stone structures in North America. That they exist is in no doubt, but what is their purpose? Why were they built? By whom where they built? Are they astronomical in purpose? What is their relationship to other megalithic structures around the world? Glenn Kreisberg explores these questions and more in his intelligent and well-researched book.

This is a subject worthy of exploration, thought and investigation, and Kreisberg has approached his subject in a scientific manner. An important aspect of this book is the variety of maps, photos, illustrations and diagrams used to back up and explain the facts included in the text. I particularly found fascinating the relationship between the North American megalithic structures and other megalithic sites around the world. Certainly, there are huge gaps in our knowledge of our ancestors and this well-thought-out book is a good step in the direction of filling those gaps.

(published by Bear & Company/Inner Traditions)

The Rise And Fall of the Dinosaurs: The Untold Story of a Lost World

Written by Steve Brusatte

I remember my parents taking me when I was little to the Natural History Museum in London. I will never forget it! I was awestruck by the huge dinosaur skeletons on display there. That sense of wonder has never been knocked out of me by life, and I’m certain a great many other people feel the same way, which means there is a huge and well-deserved potential audience for this fine book.

Author Steve Brusatte is a palaeontologist and evolutionary biologist at the University of Edinburgh. In The Rise And Fall of the Dinosaurs, he takes his readers on a journey through time back to the age of the dinosaurs using the latest discoveries and research. He vividly brings this Lost World (pun intended!) back to life.

Macmillan have done a beautiful job with the binding and presentation of this book, it truly is a thing of beauty and job forever.

I felt the same sense of awe reading this book that I did as a child in the Natural History Museum, and that is a great achievement for any author – because a sense of curiosity and wonder about the past is what makes us look forward to the future.

(published by Macmillian)

Fabulous Flying Boats: A History of the World’s Passenger Flying Boats

Written by Leslie Dawson

The world of flying boats comes straight out of the pages of an Agatha Christie novel.

I grew up near two places connected with flying boats: Foynes in County Limerick and Shannon in County Clare. In Shannon an artificial lagoon was constructed prior to World War 2, but it was not used after the war as intended and is now a wildlife sanctuary. Foynes was a regular stop for flying boats in the years before World War 2, and it now features a fine flying boat museum that is well worth a look. Foynes is also famous for the invention of the now world famous Irish Coffee, as Dawson observes.

Leslie Dawson is a pilot and this really gives Fabulous Flying Boats a great sense of authenticity. This is an extremely well-researched and well-written book that would make a great documentary.

(published by Pen & Sword Aviation)

Steve Earles is author and co-author of numerous projects, including To End All Wars: The WWI Graphic Anthology, available summer 2014 (