Sunday, November 28, 2010

Another book review: THE AX BOOK - The Lore and Science of the Woodcutter, by D. Cook

Today in the News:  Our readers came back.  I thought everyone had become Amish and shunned me.  If you like what you're reading, please click "follow" in the upper left hand corner.  We're also on facebook - tell a friend!

Link of the Day: . I noticed a bit of traffic coming to this site from the them, so I figured I'd give 'em a shout back.  It is a great and entertaining site.

 Book Review -

Forgive me if you find book reviews boring.  I'm trying to educate myself on this journey in an effort to pass it on to other people.  For the most part, those people are my kids.  What I've realized is that the knowledge that we've lost in this nation in two is horrible. The things my grandfather knew that he always talked about passing down to me, I never had time for.  I remember he had all of his horse-drawn farming implements out behind the farm sitting in the field.  He'd always tell me that sometime he needed to show me and my cousins how to use those pieces of machinery.  He'd talk about getting together on a weekend with the cousins and going over all of it, what each piece was, how it worked, how to maintain it.  But that time runs out.  On the weekend he'd want to get together, I'd have a date, cousins would have homework - life happens and that time runs out.  Next thing you know, the old man has a heart attack and it slows him down a bit.  Then you move away.  Then his time just ran out for good.  And the opportunity for a generation to pass what it knows to the next is not entirely gone, but then the skill has to be sought out by a generation that may find the skill all together useless.

I know what you're thinking, stop with the sentimental preambles.  But I can't help it.  I want my children and your children to have practical skills in this world.  If the lights went out forever tomorrow, what would they do?  Lament the passing of the wii or xbox?  When I was a kid (not that long ago) we ditched the atari for Carter Brook, a place full of life and lessons for young boys.

So, enough of all that.  As you can tell, I took a trip to the library. I failed algebra 4 times in high school and took biology three times so I certainly don't know how to use the Dewey decimal system, so a trip to the library for me is much like a trip into bushcraft without a manual for a librarian.  I look up whatever it is I'm looking for and try it ten different ways.  Then I see the book and approach a librarian and ask her to help me find it and she tells me the book is in a different town.  But they can order it.  Uh, okay.  Fine with me.

So, in addition to the book by C.P. Russell, I also picked up THE AX BOOK - The Lore and Science of the Woodcutter, by D. Cook.  The funny thing is that I'm not even finished these books and I'm reviewing them.  That's how excited I am about reading them.  While C.P. Russell goes into every factual detail of every tool used by the mountain men, the axe book is much different.  It's one man's account of growing up around the tool and secretly lusting after his brother's axe.  He also compares an axe to a chainsaw much in the way that a cowboy would've compared a horse to a car.  Throughout the book, he discusses different axes, methods of felling, stacking, burning and sharpening.  You name it, he writes about it.

Again, this is another book I'm very excited about and will probably post more as I finish reading.  If you have any "must reads" when it comes to axes or bushcraft, please email me or leave it in the comment section.
Pax Domini Sit Semper Vobiscum,

Mike, Oscar, Hotel....out.


  1. I understand your frustration, Mike. I feel like there is so much that I don't know about "off the grid" type stuff (and just about everything else, for that matter).

    That looks like another great axe book. I'm going to have to buy that one as well!


  2. Hey now, I like the book reviews. My copy of "Back to Basics" arrived today from amazon. Excellent book!

  3. Glad you like the book reviews, John, there are sure to be more. Back to Basics is a good intro to a lot of different subjects. Enjoy it!