The Daring Heart of David Livingstone: Exile, African Slavery, and the Publicity Stunt That Saved Millions

TDH_Social_untold
I am a bit of a history nut, so I was excited to see this book as an option for review through Thomas Nelson publishers. Especially, as a pro-life activist, the topic of human rights injustices being set right and abolished by godly men and women is one that is very near and dear to my heart.
When I think of the abolition movement regarding human slavery, I think of William Wilberforce in Europe, or Abraham Lincoln in America. When I saw the title of this book, I realized I don’t really know much about the abolition of slavery in Africa. So reading this book was a must for this Christian soon to be homeschool mommy! (What?! A knowledge gap?! MUST FILL WITH KNOWLEDGE!! Hehehe..)

About the Book

Book description from Amazon.com:
“The captivating, untold story of the great explorer, David Livingstone: his abiding faith and his heroic efforts to end the African slave trade.
Saint? Missionary? Scientist? Explorer?
The titles given to David Livingstone since his death are varied enough to seem dubious—and with good reason. In view of the confessions in his own journals, saint is out of the question. Even missionary is tenuous, considering he made only one convert. And despite his fame as a scientist and explorer, Livingstone left his most indelible mark on Africa in an arena few have previously examined: slavery.
His impact on abolishing what he called “this awful slave-trade” has been shockingly overlooked as the centerpiece of his African mission.
Until now.
The Daring Heart of David Livingstone tells his story from the beginning of his time in Africa to the publicity stunt that saved millions after his death.”

My Thoughts on the Book

So I’m not sure what I expected, but this book left me feeling a little confused. Don’t get me wrong, I learned a lot more about David Livingstone than I knew before (which was not much beyond, “famous African explorer”). But his “publicity stunt” that saved millions was nothing that he personally manufactured, nor was it anything intentionally orchestrated towards abolition. It just appeared to be a culmination of separate events – all geared toward scientific exploration, not abolition – that had a happy accident of highlighting the horrors of African slavery to the right people at the right time. Which is awesome, but not exactly what I would call a “publicity stunt”.
So I spent most of the book, which consisted of fairly dry reading, learning bits and pieces of Livingstones life and career, waiting for the great concerted “publicity stunt” teased at in the main title of the book. So for that alone, the book was a bit disappointing and misleading.
Judging from this book alone, Livingstone is not the character I thought he was. He seems a rather narcissistic bloke with a bit of a dishonest streak. His lack of concern for his family and his greed for exploration first, and a faith shown in words and not deeds, makes me lose a bit of respect for the man. Which is disappointing, because I started off so excited to learn about the famed explorer, expecting someone a bit more.. I dunno.. upright? Heroic? Worthy of emulation?
While the book is a bit boring at times, and the pacing is a bit slow, I will say that they don’t fall into the trap of whitewashing the historical person they are writing about, as many history books do.
So am I happy I read the book? Sure! Would I recommend it to others? Ummmm, maybe. I would have to read more books on Livingstone to see how this one ultimately stacks up. Personally, I would have preferred to watch an educational documentary on his life, rather than read the dry text on him.
[Disclaimer: There are no affiliate links in this review. I am an independent product reviewer. I only review products I am truly interested in. I don’t accept payment for reviews. The products I take the time to jabber on about are either items I have personally purchased, or the product has been provided for review after me incessantly nagging for a sample. All of my reviews are unbiased regardless of how the item was obtained.]

What do you know about David Livingstone? Did you know about the part he played in abolishing African slavery? I sure didn’t!

Gingi Freeman on sabfacebookGingi Freeman on sabinstagramGingi Freeman on sabpinterestGingi Freeman on sabtwitter
Gingi Freeman
Gingi Freeman
at
Gingi is a photographer, cosplayer, amateur chef, crazy cat lady, anime otaku, bookworm, generic geek, world traveler, conservative Christian, homeschooler, devoted military wife and stay at home new mother of two little girls.

Gingi blogs about anything and everything that is relevant to being a supermom, stay at home wife, homeschooler and geek girl! You can contact her at gingifreeman@gmail.com or via the contact form on her website at www.domesticgeekgirl.com

Gingi Freeman

Gingi is a photographer, cosplayer, amateur chef, crazy cat lady, anime otaku, bookworm, generic geek, world traveler, conservative Christian, homeschooler, devoted military wife and stay at home new mother of two little girls. Gingi blogs about anything and everything that is relevant to being a supermom, stay at home wife, homeschooler and geek girl! You can contact her at gingifreeman@gmail.com or via the contact form on her website at www.domesticgeekgirl.com

8 thoughts on “The Daring Heart of David Livingstone: Exile, African Slavery, and the Publicity Stunt That Saved Millions

  • 29 December, 2014 at 3:18 am
    Permalink

    It’s too bad finding out that Livingston isn’t as awesome as he’s usually made out to be, but that seems to be the case whenever you look into the details of famous people.

    Reply
    • 29 December, 2014 at 3:24 am
      Permalink

      Yeah.. I’ll have to dig a little more into his life to see if this book just didn’t highlight all the negative, lol.. but yeah, that’s usually the case.

      Reply
  • 29 December, 2014 at 7:55 am
    Permalink

    I hate it when a book does not live up to my expectations LOL Like a waste of excitement but additinal knowledge doesn’t hurt, right? 🙂

    Reply
    • 29 December, 2014 at 6:37 pm
      Permalink

      Yeah, can’t really complain too much. This is why I love reviewing books..if I’d paid for this bad boy I’d have been slightly irate, haha..

      Reply
  • 29 December, 2014 at 3:01 pm
    Permalink

    I’d have to say I don’t know anything about him at all, and nothing about the African slave trade. Actually, I haven’t ever thought much about slavery in Africa, so the whole subject is sort of a lightbulb for me. Not sure I would read this book after reading your review, but you have peaked my interest in the subject matter!

    Reply
    • 29 December, 2014 at 6:42 pm
      Permalink

      Yeah, it’s worth researching! The slave trade was actually heavily centralized in Africa, and when neighboring nations abolished the practice, it was kind of the last big stronghold of slave trade.. Interesting stuff!

      Reply
  • 29 December, 2014 at 4:02 pm
    Permalink

    Ack, I’d probably dig a little deeper too! Read more about him. I do hate when a book or biography or biopic doesn’t show me what I wanted to see.

    Reply
    • 29 December, 2014 at 6:44 pm
      Permalink

      Yeah, I’m planning on it! There’s still a lot I’m thinking the book isn’t fleshing out..

      Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

HEY THERE! Are YOU a Domestic Geek?

Subscribe to Domestic Geek Girl's Weekly Newsletter and don't miss a post!! Receive weekly blog post summaries *** Be the first to know about giveaways *** Enjoy exclusive offers, discounts, specials and MORE!