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on October 19, 2012
This book is far more like bibliographical accounts of people who wrote about the hollow earth. There was a part early on in the book when the author started to go on about Charles Baulelaire translating the works of Edgar Allan Poe into french and I thought what does this have to do with the hollow earth???

A lot of the book is like that, nothing to do with the hollow earth.
Theres no mention of the mythology, legends or folklore of the hollow earth.
Theres also nothing about the network of tunnels on the earth.
Completely glosses over Admiral Byrd even though Admiral Byrd supposedly made a short newsreel film inside the hollow earth which was played in movie theaters.

And as for the stupid ending, I bet the author never ever looked a map of the north pole and saw that there is a hole at the north pole which is crossed by the Lomonosov ridge.
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on May 3, 2012
The information contained in Hollow Earth is interesting by itself. The work is acceptable as an english and history assignment. However, the author is nauseating as he continuously interjects far too many of his own ill-informed personal opinions on the subject matter instead of remaining objective as he presents his material. I would suggest that a little reading of physics might expand the author's knowledge base, and the removal of said opinions might make it a great deal more readable. It is up to the reader, not this author, to assess the material and then form his or her own conclusions.
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on July 1, 2010
The subtitle---The Long and Curious History of Imagining Strange Lands, Fantastic Creatures, Advanced Civilizations, and Marvellous Machines Below the Earth's Surface---pretty well says it all. The hollow earth was a fixture in (mainly bad) fantasy and science fiction for a long time, and Standish covers all of that, as well as Sir Edmond Halley's scientific theories about an earth that was essentially a series of nested spheres---something I hadn't come across before, and a fascinating footnote in the history of science---as well as religious cults making use of the hollow earth idea, such as Cyrus Teed's Koreshans.
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on October 27, 2008
It's becomes clear very quickly that he is ridiculing and making sport of "Hollow Earth" proponents.

It does start out interesting with the reasoning behind Halley's belief in a world with spheres within spheres, and then next the Symmes holes. But it quickly goes downhill from there. It's clear there are no holes at the poles.( which can be proved by looking at space shots of the earth and the other planets and moons)
The majority of the book then takes on a series of pseudo, tongue in cheek, laugh at their stupidity with his apparently 20-20 hindsight, reviews of hollow earth literature.

This got frustrating. Admittedly there were a few interesting points and even a few laughs...but it was add infinitem.

Studying hollow earth material myself I wanted to see if he would mention the ancient legends and the other point of view where rational people strongly suspect the earth below has inhabitants.

This book ends up being a disservice to people of both views...and simply a laugh for those not familiar with either. For those not familiar with hollow earth beliefs they are not told anything about ancient legends. He briefly glosses over Agarta at the end in his continued ridiculing of hollow earth beliefs. He even quicker dispenses with south pole Nazi's and UFO's, even though a chapter is supposedly dedicated to these aspects. When I got to that chapter I hoped maybe he would at least do a brief presentation of these theories with an even approach, but it was more of the same and indeed he dispensed with this part as quickly as he could.

He devoted more of the book to somewhat plageristic tendencies in exceedingly long quotes of literature, but dumped genuine legends in the garbage and indeed deliberately avoided them, as certainly anyone who did this much research on hollow earth beliefs, MUST have been aware of the ancient legends.
He deliberately points out the worst possible sentences in the book "The Hollow Earth" by Bernard. ( granted Bernard doesn't do himself any favors by continued belief in the Symmes holes, and thus reduces the value of his other material by association) No doubt Standish infuriates hollow earth believers with his completely biased approach.

Not one mention of Hopi, Scandinavian, biblical, German, Indian, Mayan, Aztec, Egyptian, or Chaldean legends about underground inhabitants is mentioned, and Agartha is only briefly passed over. Thus this becomes an extremely biased work not intent on informing people, but rather encouraging people to laugh at the belief by exhibiting only one side of the evidence
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