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American Man-Killers: True Stories of a Dangerous Wilderness Hardcover


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 250 pages
  • Publisher: Safari Press; Subsequent edition (June 10, 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 157157056X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1571570567
  • Product Dimensions: 9.3 x 6 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,810,807 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

Most people think of nature and wilderness as a place where animals and humans can play and peacefully co-exist. Yet as the end of the twentieth century draws nearer, it turns out animals and people do not live at peace as often as the television shows would have us believe. Dozens of times each year people are attacked and not infrequently killed by cougars, bears, and a sundry of other aggressive critters (dogs, birds, crocs, alligators and even deer). Don Zaidle has done a masterful job of describing and analyzing what happened and why. His prose is hair-raising in its suspense and candor. All stories in his book are based on actual encounters, which makes the book all the more chilling and worthwhile. After reading this, you will take a whole new look at Mother Nature, and you may never look at any wild animal in the same way again!

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Customer Reviews

3.8 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By BRETTJ5150@aol.com on June 17, 1998
Format: Hardcover
If you are looking for a taste of reality (pun intended), then this is the book for you. Go into the aspect of nature that is not portrayed by some so called animal documentaries and animal hugging cute movies. As a hunter, I am well aware of the reality of cause and effect. I am also aware that people don't like to look at what they would call the gory side of nature. Yes, more often than not papa bear eats baby bear; and in some cases papa bear eats Mr. Smith who lives down the street. Don does a good job of revealing this fact by documented accounts. These accounts are chilling, gory, and suspenseful. He also throws in some humor throughout this book. The book is not for the faint of heart. But in a country where a lot of people have lost their touch with nature, I feel it is mandatory reading. Yes mother nature is beautiful. But she can also be cruel, incompassionate, and down-right mean.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Wally on May 17, 2000
Format: Hardcover
I can't accuse Mr. Zaidle of sensationalism. What could be more sensational than the subject matter itself? I've read many books of this genre, and Mr. Zaidle's humorous writing style definitely takes the edge off of some pretty gruesome stuff. I read this type of book to educate myself because I,personally, enjoy surviving. I've seen people in my town shove their young child toward antlered deer with an apple in their hand. I've seen toddlers and Rottweilers playing in the same yard. What people don't know can hurt them,and their loved ones. What people, like these unenlightened parents, could learn from this book could save them a lot of grief. No, not all animals are killers,but, they can be. If you put a bicycle helmet on your kid, there are other precautions you could take as well. Enjoyable book to read. I highly recommend it!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on October 14, 1997
Format: Hardcover
I love a good, scary story. Stephen King at the top of his game, Dean Koontz, Clive Barker. Yet, after having read scores of horror novels, none scared me in quite the same way as American Man-Killers-the scariest book I ever read. Why? Because American Man-Killers isn't something created by man's imagination. It's real. The cougars, bears, wolves, alligators, and even our friends the dogs are real. The horror of the injuries and deaths they've caused is real. From the vicious attack on "Bear" Moore, the Grizzly Hater, who walks away from a bear attack with half his face hanging off, to the author's account of watching a piece of his own flesh swallowed like so much meat, American Man-Killers is a testament to the wiles and strength of killer animals. Yet, intense as the subject material may be, Don Zaidle makes the reading easy by interjecting his own "smart-elbow" view of life into the text. And he blends the horror and the humor as easy as cream lightens coffee. American Man-Killers was written to warn us, to inform us, and even to entertain us. Read it, and you'll remember how you felt after seeing Jaws-you won't go back in the water ... I mean the woods.
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24 of 34 people found the following review helpful By Greg Henrikson on October 5, 1999
Format: Hardcover
Zaidle is on the right track in disabusing people of Disney notions, but he goes too far the other way, and reinforces some other Hollywood notions about blood-thirsty beasts. I've walked right next to wild moose dozens of times, and have run smack into bear on the trail more than once. Trust me, it is FAR, FAR more dangerous to drive down the Seward Highway or up the Parks Highway to get to your trailhead than it is to hike on that trial.
Zaidle would have you believe the bear, moose, dear, etc. all "want your blood" (not to mention cats, dogs, salmon, trout, sea bass, herring etc). In fact, most bear are scared of to death of people (only the two-year olds and garbage bears aren't), and the moose just don't give a damn about you.
From time to time a bear will attack a hunter after a botched shot, or while the hunter is cleaning his game. Sometimes they'll try to break into a cabin to get food. But these attacks are rare, and the vast majority of the time the bear looses. Most of the on-trail attacks involve sows with cubs, and these can usually be avoided if you know how to behave.
Unlike some tigers, bear do not target people for food. If an adult grizzly *really* targeted you for its next meal, it would stalk you and nail you from cover. You'd never see it coming. This is an animal that can weigh a thousand pounds and still run faster than Jesse Owens. It would hit you hard enough to snap your spine like a twig. This never happens, at least I've never heard of it. Even children survive most bear attacks. It's more likely you have something the bear wants, or that the bear is protecting something from you, like a moose kill or cubs. Sometimes the bear is just tossing you around for fun.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on October 26, 1997
Format: Hardcover
Don Zaidle shook me up like a grizzly shakes a
full-grown human being in its massive jaws. He
led me down a country path (or was it a city
street?) to show me a real-life horror:
Americans, who have prided themselves as the
hunters, are, in fact, the hunted.

Don respects nature's creatures. He's been
stung, bitten and mistaken for an entrée by a
four-legged "friend." His personal anecdotes
show that he hasn't just cracked a book; he's
got on-the-job experience. He encourages
readers to take off their rose-colored
amusement-park glasses and see animals for
what they are. They're cougars, bears, deer
and miscellaneous man-killers, not Simba,
Gentle Ben and Bambi. If that's all you get
out of his book, then he's done his job. But
there's so much more. He's a talented
storyteller with whip-cracking wit and a sense
of humor that rivals the best comedians who
make you laugh because it's better than crying
or cowering in the corner.

This book is not just for outdoors folks.
People with little or no experience with
hunting or camping can learn a thing or two.
If you're a gun dummy like me, you might get
lost in his talk about gauges, slugs, chutes,
muzzles and the like. But don't skip those
parts or you'll miss some gems.

For PC cops who get their panties up in a
bunch about politically incorrect language, a
word of warning: You'll probably get offended
... especially if you happen to like your
mother-in-law. Don's got more mother-in-law
jokes than a Georgia anthill has fire ants.
But don't let that stop you from reading.
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