Both a history and a modern travelogue, The Lost City Of Z (Vintage, $15.95) is the perfect companion for any excursion. David Grann traces the glamorous and perilous life of Col. Percy Fawcett, an explorer for the Royal Geographic Society, who in the mid-20th century searched the Amazon jungle for a long-lost advanced civilization. Grann follows in Fawcett’s footsteps in 2007, bringing with him not only modern amenities (GPS) but a writer’s sensibility; while his arduous trek is slow, this book moves at a rigorous clip. The Lost City of Z is a must read for the adventurous—or the adventurous at heart.
Long before radar, satellites and Google Earth there was the Royal Geographic Society and men like Col. Percy Fawcett, adventurers of the first order heading out from Europe to map the last of the world's wilderness in the mid-twentieth century. Nearly a hundred years later, New Yorker writer David Grann tells the exciting story of Fawcett's search for a lost advanced civilization, weaving the tale of Fawcett's exploration of the Amazon with his own search for the missing explorer. Grann recounts with skin-crawling detail the many pests (Eye-licking bugs? No thank you.) and heart-stopping dangers he encountered while following in Fawcett's footsteps. Despite the slow and arduous jungle travel it recounts, David Grann's The Lost City of Z moves rapidly, making it the perfect companion for your own journey to the Amazon, the beach, or the backyard.