A young explorer finds his soul amid the trackless jungle in this rousing eco-adventure. Rosolie, a naturalist who runs (and subtly plugs) an eco-tourism outfit, recounts his exploits from the age of 18 when he escaped New Jersey and lit out for the Madre de Dios region of the Peruvian Amazon basin, a paradise of primeval forest and riotous wildlife. Mentored by an Indian family, then graduating to solo treks to remote uninhabited areas, he wrestles with giant anacondas, faces down crocodiles, tenderly parents an orphaned anteater, feels the presence of jaguars panting over him in the night, and edges towards an encounter with possibly murderous tribesmen. Along the way he battles poachers and sounds the alarm against civilized encroachments that are obliterating the world’s wildernesses. This is old-school nature writing, unabashedly romantic and free of alienation; the author foregrounds his drama of elemental self-discovery—“along the river-bank I ran, screaming at the storm to give me its worst, in adrenaline-induced madness”—and is forever gazing into the gorgeous eyes, and tragic spirits, of the critters he meets. Rosolie’s powers of description are so vivid and engrossing that readers will be swept along in his passion. Photos. (Mar. 18)
Reviewed on: 01/27/2014 Release date: 03/01/2014 Genre: Nonfiction
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