What a deadly obsession this book is. I read it like a cataphile exploring the Catacombs of Paris.
David Grann is a fab writer who’s uncovered a lot of great stuff about the English explorer Percy Fawcett — but then Fawcett was such an intriguing and fascinating man, so mostly it’s Fawcett’s adventures and darring-do and divine sense of purpose to find a lost and ancient civilization in the Amazon that sets the book alight.
In fact, Grann’s actual trip to the Amazon pales to Fawcett’s sensational disappearance and his own crazy expeditions, and I wondered why Grann bothered — he could have told it all from his armchair. But then Grann does put you there in the Amazon with all the hostility and fear and wonder.
Basically it’s a swashbuckling adventure tale and I was glued to it like a plastic plane in a dogfight. Loved every minute of it and it kept me up late, reading and taking notes.
“Some other places were not so good but maybe we were not so good when we were in them.” Ernest Hemingway
“We must be willing to get rid of the life we’ve planned, so as to have the life that is waiting for us.” Joseph Campbell