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The Curse of Oak Island

The Story of the World's Longest Treasure Hunt
Narrated by: Braden Wright
Length: 16 hrs and 37 mins
Categories: History, World
4.5 out of 5 stars (47 ratings)

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Summary

From longtime Rolling Stone contributing editor and journalist Randall Sullivan, The Curse of Oak Island explores the curious history of Oak Island and the generations of individuals who have tried and failed to unlock its secrets.

In 1795, a teenager discovered a mysterious circular depression in the ground on Oak Island, in Nova Scotia, Canada, and ignited rumors of buried treasure. Early excavators uncovered a clay-lined shaft containing layers of soil interspersed with wooden platforms, but when they reached a depth of ninety feet, water poured into the shaft and made further digging impossible. 

Since then the mystery of Oak Island’s “Money Pit” has enthralled generations of treasure hunters, including a Boston insurance salesman whose obsession ruined him; young Franklin Delano Roosevelt; and film star Errol Flynn. Perplexing discoveries have ignited explorers’ imaginations: a flat stone inscribed in code; a flood tunnel draining from a man-made beach; a torn scrap of parchment; stone markers forming a huge cross. Swaths of the island were bulldozed looking for answers; excavation attempts have claimed two lives. Theories abound as to what’s hidden on Oak Island - pirates’ treasure, Marie Antoinette’s lost jewels, the Holy Grail, proof that Sir Francis Bacon was the true author of Shakespeare’s plays - yet to this day, the Money Pit remains an enigma. 

The Curse of Oak Island is a fascinating account of the strange, rich history of the island and the intrepid treasure hunters who have driven themselves to financial ruin, psychotic breakdowns, and even death in pursuit of answers. And as Michigan brothers Marty and Rick Lagina become the latest to attempt to solve the mystery, as documented on the History Channel’s television show The Curse of Oak Island, Sullivan takes listeners along to follow their quest firsthand. 

©2018 Randall Sullivan (P)2019 Brilliance Publishing, Inc., all rights reserved.

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    4 out of 5 stars

Nothing new and already dated!

If you’re a fan of the show ‘The Curse of Oak Island’ or have read about the island previously most of what this book covers will be nothing new. Only going up to season 5. Season 6 is airing as I write.

What it does do new is give a brief insight into the Lagina’s and their comrades behind the scenes, a few of the more obscure fringe theories and Sullivan’s own dealings with the island and its peoples.

If you’re not privy to the TV show, welcome aboard the Oak Island train! This book details the history and finds in a narrative that doesn’t just become a list of things that happened. All the main theories are here and by the time you’re done reading you’ll be clued up to the obvious truth of a Templar Spanish Pirate conspiracy to hide priceless coconuts!

Honestly I don’t really care for Sullivan, his appearances on the TV show make him seem self entitled, full of himself and his cadence of speech is pretty annoying.

Luckily his mannerisms barely come through to his writings and this book is excellently narrated by Wright, who manages to make the sometimes repetitive info fun.

1 person found this helpful

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Great listen

There’s a lot to take in with this book so you may need a second listen. I learnt a lot about Oak island and the treasure hunters and no doubt give it a third go when I get bored.

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Excellent

A very in depth history of the modern search for treasure on oak island. It focussed heavily on who did what and when. I found it very interesting. It was a long wait for this book and I was not disappointed.

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oak island

loved it! great narrator well worth a listen, not a waste of credits/money if interested in the subject

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Very detailed back story

If you enjoy the History Channel show of the same name, then it is really worth listening to this book. A detailed back story of the whole saga. Makes you also realise how much the TV show leaves out or dramatises for the show.

Some great information, but at times a lot to process. Maybe easier in print.

Good none the less.

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Interesting, but too factual

I could never see part the numbers. So much info about years, distance and depth. I mistake it for a novel / fact book. I wanted more. Not my cup of tea, I want to be wowed, not bored.

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Amazing book

Without doubt the best treasure hunt book. I want to go and find the treasure

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 27-03-19

The ultimate Osk Island show add on

If you can't get enough of the History Channels "The Curse of Oak Island" or you simply want to know more about the island itself, then this book is a must! Braden Wright does an excellent job narrating the book, and that's something coming from me. He isn't dull or boring and truly sounds as if he's actually enjoying the book himself.
Right off the bat, you can tell Randall has a serious interest in the island and whether he wants to admit it or not, he has been hooked by the mystery since day one. Yet, unlike most, Randall takes a very senseable and reasonable look at the island through the eyes of history and does an outstanding job investigating the many theories that have popped up over the centuries.
I highly recommend this book for any Oak Island lover or anyone interested in lost treasure. My only wish is that there could be other books like this, which focus on different lost treasures from around the world!

11 people found this helpful

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  • tjcrewsbooks
  • 24-03-19

Captivating, entertaining, and informative.

The amount of research that went into the writing of this book is astonishing--but not dry. The book becomes a living, breathing, ongoing tale of searches for treasure and solutions to mystery. Randall Sullivan writes frequently in the first person throughout this book to offer his own insight and observations--which kept me engaged and very interested.
Those of us who are familiar with the TV show, The Curse of Oak Island, realize that the show gives us only the tip of the iceberg regarding the history of the search for Oak Island treasure.
This book also goes into detail about the rivalry between Dan Blankenship and Fred Nolan--which is significant if we want to understand the animosity they held for each other most of their adult lives.
The quality of the reader/narrator can't be understated. A bad narrator can ruin a great book. A great narrator can make a great book even greater. Brandon Wright does a fantastic job as narrator of this book.

11 people found this helpful

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  • Dan
  • 27-08-19

Almost too much info. Kind of companion to TV show

Reasonably interesting story of Oak Island. But maybe too much info and too much ancient history. A large part of the book is about the history of various pirates, secret societies, Elizabethan England, the history of Nova Scotia, Francis Bacon, etc. It is questionable whether so much historical context is really helpful, or just confusing. As it is there is a dizzying array of characters described in the book who take part in the exploration of Oak Island over the years. Also be warned that the book is a kind companion to the History Channel series of the same name. I suspect that those who have not watched the show (like me) might not enjoy the book as much as those who have watched the show. And of course, most disappointing of all, the riddle of Oak Island remains unsolved.

5 people found this helpful

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  • Sammy R
  • 21-03-19

The Curse Of Oak Island

I really liked this book and story. There was plenty of information giving that I didn't know about. I would recommend this book to all.

9 people found this helpful

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  • Steve Stricker
  • 26-03-19

Long but worthwhile

I “read” the audio book on a long two day drive. Although the the book was quite long and a bit boring during some of the theory descriptions, I found it very informative and it made the tv series much more interesting. The Nolan Blankenship conflict was explained evenhandedly and all the TV characters were given much more depth. The most notable benefit of the read was understanding all the prior efforts to unearth whatever lies underground and the extent of the drilling and excavations that have accumulated over the years.
Anyone with at least a moderate interest in Oak Island should find this read rewarding.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Mark
  • 08-04-19

In depth and entertaining

I am a big fan of the show and have had an interest in the Oak Island mystery since childhood - I would say this book by Mr Sullivan is the most comprehensive of any that I have read on the subject. I really appreciated how even handed the author was in examining such a wide range of theories and ideas. In many ways his pragmatic approach debunked a number of the more fringe theories, yet throughout the book he concedes that many remain as potentially viable answers. The destruction of the original money pit area while in pursuit of the treasure may ultimately prevent finding out a definitive answer. I was very surprised at how many tunnels and shafts were attempted in the over 200 year pursuit. Was there ever a treasure, what was the treasure, is it still there and who actually was responsible for the original work - all questions that may never be answered. The content was fascinating, the narration was exceptional. Well worth the credit.

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  • SANTOS
  • 29-03-19

Very Informative

Excellent Story, goes into detail of the theories of what’s believed to be buried on the island. I’m a huge fan of the show.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Kindle Customer
  • 16-05-20

Loved it!

The author and the narrator has the reader or listener wondering what's happening next to the end.

1 person found this helpful

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  • CatDeMeow
  • 11-03-20

Must listen to if you love the Mystery

This auther has out done himself on research. The narrator is fabulous. I will highly recommend this book to anyone remotely fascinated with Oak Island.

1 person found this helpful

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  • James
  • 13-02-20

Excellent

I rarely write reviews beyond just giving a listen stars. I’m doing it this time because this book is excellent.

1 person found this helpful