Originally, I bought this book specifically because I love the original King Kong and am always hungry to read anything and everything I can get my hands on written about it.
I was sure surprised with this book. I found myself completely engrossed in the life of a truly extraordinary human being, Merian C. Cooper.
Starting with his childhood and going into his WWI experiences and beyond, this is more than a mere "man behind a movie" biography. After reading this book, I think that this man's life would make three or four spectacular films, because there is too much to tell in just one movie! The author, through interviews, journal entries, and the like gives you the feeling of looking over Mr. Cooper's shoulder and being with him in that particular time period. You actually start to feel this man's thirst for adventure! His disdain for "civilization" and all things soft is from a bygone era. Here was a man whose motto was "Keep it...dangerous" He thrived on danger, hence the title of the book.
While I have never been into books about explorers, this made me want to learn more about the places and experiences that Mr. Cooper experienced. Not to be overly dramatic, but this is the first book I've read in a long time where I truly felt inspired upon finishing it. I couldn't put it down and didn't want it to end.
This is a must read for fans of classic movies and especially King Kong. But don't think of this as a "King Kong book." It is much, much more than that. Once you read this you will want to see the films that he made other than Kong, such as Grass, Chang, and the Four Feathers (which also featured Fay Wray).