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Showing 1-10 of 12 reviews(3 star). Show all reviews
on March 17, 2000
The book was pieced together very quickly, but I think the connection is there. Some readers thought that the pyramids of Cydonia are natural. HA! There is no known process that creates pyramidal bases for "sand dunes". Cydonia is artificial- let there be no doubt. The face showed extreme symmetry, if the critics cared to look beyond the "catbox" The only doubt is the connection to Egypt. Hancock can't prove beyond a doubt, and I don't blame reviewers if they didn't believe him, but this book is intriguing. The writing is bad, but for the ideas that he presents, it still gets 3 stars from me. And by the way, you might want a salt shaker by your side for some of the chapters.
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on August 29, 1998
Graham Hancock's foray into "The Mars Mystery" suggests a disjointedness that is not in character with his usual form. It is definitely not of the same high quality of "Fingerprints of the Gods"; however it does contain the elements of a good story if told with less speculation and more supporting evidence. There is little question that The Face and the Pyramids of the Cydonian plain on Mars make for an intriguing mystery which will likely only be resolved with extensive exploration of Mars. Is this arrangement a natural fluke or an engineered set of structures put there by an ancient race of intelligent beings, beings which may have had a link to Earth? Hancock only serves to heighten the frustration previously generated by Richard Hoagland in "The Monuments of Mars". This frustration is not helped in any significant way by a disappointing resolution and lack of clarity in the Mars Global Surveyor and the Malin Space Science Systems Mars Orbital Camera, aided and abetted by the potentially subjective method of computer "contrast enhancement" and the suggestion of a NASA cover-up complicity. But this Cydonian part of the book does not seem to fit with the rest of it; I tend to agree with T. Peters in his review that the lack of a "walloping confirmation" from the Mars Global Surveyor forced publication of a book in heavily revised form. But what is the true story told here, what was Hancock really trying to say? That Mars was once rich in atmosphere and water and now stands in stark testimony to the vastly destructive effect of asteroid and comet impact is a reasonable thesis. That the same thing could happen to Earth is also a credible argument and the fact that the Yucatan peninsula Chicxulub crater evidences the Cretaceous -Tertiary extinction of the dinosaurs and 50% of the genera and 90% of the species of the existing life should give us pause for a realistic contemplation. Walter Alvarez in his "T. Rex and the Crater of Doom" actually tells this story better. But here Hancock launches a speculative work which requires great conjectural talent; the proposition that a single giant asteroid breakup is responsible for nearly all of the entire present topological state of Mars is indeed harrowing. True, this would have had the necessary energy to explain a host of questions. A single impactor which produced the Martian Huygens Crater at 305 degrees West and 17 degrees South would have had the necessary energy to denude the entire Martian surface of its once robust 3 bar atmosphere while thrusting up the largest volcano in the solar system, Olympus Mons, within about 4 degrees of its exact geometric antipode. Surely multiple hits which created the three largest basins on Mars would boast orders of magnitude larger energy availability for ocean destruction, crustal distortion, and shield volcano excitation, although Hancock does not attempt any actual quantitative exposition, making instead an intriguing qualitative case. It follows that we earthlings should be very attentive to our potential affinity for earth crossing objects. If Hancock has achieved something of merit, it is a call for the continued exploration of Mars and a growing public emphasis upon asteroid and comet research, both compelling topics with a potentially profound impact on our past...and our future.
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on July 7, 1998
Graham Hancock's newest book, which I had eagerly anticipated since reading (and re-reading) both of his previous books on (supposedly) similar topics (Fingerprints of the Gods, Message of the Sphinx), was somewhat of a disappointment. His two previous works in this area, although heavily "discredited" on the web, here and elsewhere, as reaching too far, I found to be the most well researched and "hmmmm..."-oriented on the subject of a civliization pre-dating currently accepted theories (which is the extent all conventionally accepted "truths" of the history of the human race are, as there is no soild proof, only compelling eveidence, which Hancock presents...) as to the origin of ancient structures on our planet, the time frame of their creation and of the culture of the creators/builders, itself a topic hardly even considered by most "experts" (i.e. professors, archaeologists, historians, etc..this is dealt with in "Fingerprints" extensively). One thing I always liked about Hancock was his un-reliance on "aliens"; he tried to fit in the pieces of the puzzle with a new perspective of the evidence at hand, "right" or "wrong", the same evidence used by the "experts", interpreted through a new filter. Yet with "his" new book (a look at the authorship in the author's note shows that his research assistant wrote many of the chapters) seems less involved with a connection between Earth and Mars as far as ancient civilizations than you would deals more with the possibility that Mars had been ravaged by comet or asteriod collisions in its history, and that Earth may have suffered and may soon see a re-occurring threat of this type of disaster. This in itself is an interesting and intruiging possibility, well documented and handled by Hancock et. al., but the "secret" connection doesn't hold up. For those of you who have read his previous works, trust me there is the the slightest, alth! ough interesting, connection between ancient structures and civilizations and Mars in this book, but it is definitely not the book I had expected from Mr. Hancock. A far more interesting work in this area is "The Monuments of Mars" by Richard Hoagland. In fact it seems from postings and websites (for what they are worth) that Mr. Hancock was asked to write this book, and put what he had been working on hold, by his publishers due to the recent interest in the "life on Mars" news stories. At any rate, although still an interesting and informative read (as usual), "Mars Mystery" didn't live up to the standard the author himself set with his previous works, although far beyond most books in this area. Anyone who is new to Hancock should definitely start with "Fingerprints of the Gods", and those of you familiar with his work, keep a grain of salt nearby....
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on August 7, 1998
I am a hugh fan of Graham Hancock and have read 3 of his previous books, "The Sign and the Seal", "Fingerprints of the Gods" and "Message of the Sphinx"......this was by far the weakest of them. It seems that Mr. Hancock is treading on ground that he is not as familiar with. Indeed, after reading Hoagland's "Monuments of Mars", this books seems weak. But none the less, he adds valuable material to the subject of an ancient connection between ancient ruins on Earth and anomilies on Mars. What I found most interesting was the section on asteroids and comets. This was tangential to the basic theme of the book, but it made me think. This needs more scholarly study. Graham Hancock knows that current Archaeology, Anthropology, and Ancient History has "missed the boat" in many areas. He proposes a key to unlock many of these mysteries. This book adds to that key. I hope his next book is better written.
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I had waited anxiously for Graham Hancock's newest book, The Mars Mystery, but was disappointed. It certainly contained important information about potential cosmic threats, but I believe it failed to delve into the ancient Earth/Mars connection as thoroughly as I would have expected from this author. I expected a re-analysis of texts and myths based on the concept of an ancient Martian civilization and how that might have impacted our own. The book was almost tentative in its approach in every area it examined. Mr. Hancock has brought forth revolutionary concepts in his previous books without qualifying them at every turn as he seems to in this work. The book will hopefully help to bring attention to the potential of destructive meteors and comets and spark a demand to devote more resources from our governments to examine these further. I hope we can look forward to more books from Mr. Hancock on his ancient civilization theories in the future.
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on December 21, 1998
This book was exactly what I had expected after seeing an interview with Hancock on the Tom Snyder television program. Hancock is asking some interesting questions, and has some interesting theories, but one must read this book with a serious grain of salt. Yet, keeping an open mind can also make reading this book fun. Sometimes it's enjoyable to say "what if."
The aramageddon astaroid section was a little tiresome, while i have to admit the projections made concerning the after-effects of a direct hit by an asteroid or comet scared this reader.
This book is outside of the previaling orthodoxy, so in some respects Hancock has appealed to the conspiracy theorist in this reader, but in the end his arguments just sound sensationalistic. Sorry Graham. Better luck next time.
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on November 10, 1998
This is my first time reading a book by Graham Hancock. I have read some of the reviews other people have written and agree for the most part. This book was like two or three different unrelated books combined into one. There was not a smooth transition from the Mars Structures to the End of the world scenario chapters. The book didn't get interesting until the very end when you could tell the author was getting overly excited about what he was writing. Once you read past the "man has lost its soul and the Gods are angry" stuff it does make you think about how our solar system isn't the isolated place that we think it to be.
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on January 25, 1999
I have read and enjoyed several of Graham Hancock's books. In general I find his work to be fascinating, thought provoking and potentially of enormous import.
This time, though, I think he drops the ball. Unlike his previous work -- especially the magnificent FINGERPRINTS OF THE GODS -- this book reads as though it were thrown together in a couple of weeks to make a few bucks.
Forget this one and read FINGERPRINTS.
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on January 17, 1999
Hancock & Bauval's story is a recapitulation of work far more scientifically covered by the Society for Planetary SETI Research in The Case from the Face, from whose writings this book draws liberally. Another excellent text is The Martian Enigmas. Go to the original sources. Frequently, Hancock is just rewriting other's material.
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on August 3, 1998
I have read Hancock's previous books with interest and Fingerprints is an excellent work. This work is fragmented and loses itself between its multiple authors and multiple threads. This book is not up to the mark and is not a book that I could recommend.Tim Frost
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