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The Other Islands of New York City: A History and Guide (Second Edition) Paperback – June 1, 2001


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Countryman Press; Second Edition edition (June 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0881505021
  • ISBN-13: 978-0881505023
  • Product Dimensions: 0.7 x 6.1 x 9.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,028,722 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Library Journal

Journalists and New York City natives Seitz and Miller have written an entertaining history of and travel guide to 40 of the human-made and natural islands that dot the waters around New York City. From famous tourist destinations such as Liberty and Ellis islands, to the infamous Rikers Island Penitentiary and the little-known North Brother Island, where Typhoid Mary spent nearly 30 years in confinement, the islands of New York City have a vivid and intriguing story to tell. Armchair travelers and regular visitors to the city alike will find this an enjoyable book. The authors indicate which islands can be visited, whether you can get there by car, bus, subway, or ferry, and, in a few cases, where you can eat. Recommended for public libraries.?Linda M. Kaufmann, Freel Lib., North Adams State Coll., Mass.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

"a book that explores, in depth, those parts of New York City almost always left out of the usual books." -- The Island Current

"a well-written and comprehensive tale...a lively history of the people and events that forged modern day New York City" -- The Urban Audubon

"an encyclopedia of the archipelago that is New York." -- New York Post

"only occassionally does something new come along that I deem an important work. This book falls into this category." -- Bronx Times Reporter

"rescues for readers the history and legend that lie in the soil or rock of these oft-forgotten strands" -- New York Chronicle

This is definitely a book I want for my shelf. -- Mario Cuomo, former governor of New York State

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Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5 stars
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This is a wonderful book, well written and informative.
traybayny
This book is a great resource for anyone interested in learning about the New York City most people don't know.
Charles Conway
Open it anywhere and you'll find something that will keep you reading for a long time.
Steve

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

21 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Luis Hernandez on November 14, 2002
Format: Paperback
As a native New Yorker, I heard of many islands that occupied the waters that surround the five boroughs of the city. As I flew back into LaGuardia and JFK airports I even began to notice them from above. Obtaining information about these islands was very difficult, even from local libraries, and therefore when I found this book at a local bookstore, I was delighted that someone came up with the idea of publishing such a book.
From Roosevelt Island to Cuban Ledge, the authors give a very thorough and well researched book on the many islands inhabiting the New York archipelago. Many islands which were once islands, but have long since been connected to the boroughs by artificial landfills are also covered here (e.g. Coney Island-Brooklyn, Hunter Island-Bronx, Battery Park area-Manhattan, etc..) are also covered here.
If you live in the city or plan on visiting, please make sure to pick up a copy of this guide, and make sure to visit the many hidden treasures found in this city.It makes an excellent companion book while aboard a plane or even in the subway.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Noah Green on May 31, 2000
Format: Paperback
New York City is an archipelago of islands - this is a reality that has been paved under by centuries of development in this great city, but has been brought to light in this fun, excellent little book.
Besides Manhattan Island, Roosevelt Island, Staten Island, etc., there are a host of tiny lesser-known islands all around the waterways of the city, and this book describes them all. Each and every one of them has a unique history - most were settled at one time or another, most are abandoned now - as well as a unique ecosystem. The book does a great job exploring all these aspects, in prose that has just the right level of detail to inform and excite. The histories it relates are miniature, fractured reflections, serving to both highlight and contrast with the mainstream narrative of NYC history.
Here are a few islands you may never have heard of before - North Brother Island, Swinburne Island, Shooters' Island, and - my personal favorite - U Thant Island, named for a late U.N. diplomat. Yes, there really is a place within New York City limits called "U Thant Island!" Reading this stuff makes you want to go to these places. Most of them are illegal to visit, and unfortunately the authors are responsible, law-abiding individuals who won't tell you how to get to them. Too bad :)
For urban historians, this book is like a collection of lost pottery shards of NYC life. For ecologists, it is a testament to the resilience of wildlife in some of the busiest waterways in the world. And for aspiring urban explorers, it is a temptation to buy a raft, flashlight, and wire cutters....
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Luis Hernandez on June 3, 2000
Format: Paperback
As a native New Yorker, I heard of many islands that occupied the waters that surrounded the five boroughs of the city. As I flew back into LaGuardia and JFK airports I even began to notice them from above. Obtaining information about these islands was very difficult, even from local libraries, and therefore when I found this book at a local bookstore, I was delighted that someone came up with the idea of publishing such a book.
From Roosevelt Island to Cuban Ledge, the authors give a very thorough and well researched book on the many islands inhabiting the New York archipelago. Many islands which were once islands, but have long since been connected to the boroughs by artificial landfills are also covered here (e.g. Coney Island-Brooklyn, Hunter Island-Bronx, Battery Park area-Manhattan, etc..) are also covered here.
If you live in the city or plan on visiting, please make sure to pick up a copy of this guide, and make sure to visit the many hidden treasures found in this city.It makes an excellent companion book while aboard a plane or even in the subway.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Kenneth P. Raftery on October 17, 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I read this book due to my interest in Hoffman and Swinburne Islands. I have noticed them for years during my walks on the South Beach boardwalk in Staten Island, and I wanted to find out more about them. This book is probably one of the few books to actually have an entire chapter devoted to these two islands. But I got more than I bargained for by reading this book because I learned a lot about many other islands of NYC. I have lived in NYC my entire life (which means 35 years) and this book made me feel like a total stranger to my home state. But I mean that as a compliment to the book, because I now have an interest in visiting the islands mentioned in the book in order to continue to enhance the knowledge that the book gave me. My main criticism is the lack of photos. For example, the chapter on Hoffman and Swinburne has one photo, and this photo merely shows two shacks sitting on a tiny part of an island. The photo doesn't explain that the shacks are on Swinburne, and there is not one photo of Hoffman at all. All chapters are like this. It's hard to appreciate the layout/size of the islands without photos. Other than that, I would recommend this book to readers.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Rita on November 20, 2005
Format: Paperback
Whenever we take guests on a cruise around NYC I am the designated tour guide who points out all the sights. People are always amazed by all the little known stories about the history of the city as viewed from the water that I can relate to them. Many of them I gleaned from this wonderful book. After you read this book, a ferry or circle line ride will be a totally new experience.
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