Read River of Darkness: Francisco Orellana's Legendary Voyage of Death and Discovery Down the Amazon by Buddy Levy Free Online
Book Title: River of Darkness: Francisco Orellana's Legendary Voyage of Death and Discovery Down the Amazon|
The author of the book: Buddy Levy
ISBN 13: 9780553807509
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 18.65 MB
Date of issue: February 22nd 2011
Read full description of the books River of Darkness: Francisco Orellana's Legendary Voyage of Death and Discovery Down the Amazon:From the acclaimed author of Conquistador comes this thrilling account of one of history’s greatest adventures of discovery. With cinematic immediacy and meticulous attention to historical detail, here is the true story of a legendary sixteenth-century explorer and his death-defying navigation of the Amazon—river of darkness, pathway to gold.
In 1541, the brutal conquistador Gonzalo Pizarro and his well-born lieutenant Francisco Orellana set off from Quito in search of La Canela, South America’s rumored Land of Cinnamon, and the fabled El Dorado, “the golden man.” Driving an enormous retinue of mercenaries, enslaved natives, horses, hunting dogs, and other animals across the Andes, they watched their proud expedition begin to disintegrate even before they descended into the nightmarish jungle, following the course of a powerful river. Soon hopelessly lost in the swampy labyrinth, their numbers diminishing daily through disease, starvation, and Indian attacks, Pizarro and Orellana made a fateful decision to separate. While Pizarro eventually returned home barefoot and in rags, Orellana and fifty-seven men, in a few fragile craft, continued downriver into the unknown reaches of the mighty Amazon, serenaded by native war drums and the eerie cries of exotic predators. Theirs would be the greater glory.
Interweaving eyewitness accounts of the quest with newly uncovered details, Buddy Levy reconstructs the seminal journey that has electrified adventurers ever since, as Orellana became the first European to navigate and explore the entire length of the world’s largest river. Levy gives a long-overdue account of the native populations—some peaceful and welcoming, offering sustenance and life-saving guidance, others ferociously hostile, subjecting the invaders to gauntlets of unremitting attack and intimations of terrifying rituals. And here is the Amazon itself, a powerful presence whose every twist and turn held the promise of new wonders both natural and man-made, as well as the ever-present risk of death—a river that would hold Orellana in its irresistible embrace to the end of his life.
Overflowing with violence and beauty, nobility and tragedy, River of Darkness is both riveting history and a breathtaking adventure that will sweep readers along on an epic voyage unlike any other.
Read information about the authorBuddy Levy is the author of River of Darkness: Francisco Orellana's Legendary Voyage of Death and Discovery Down the Amazon (Bantam 2011); Conquistador: Hernan Cortes, King Montezuma, and the Last Stand of the Aztecs (Bantam Dell, 2008); American Legend: The Real-Life Adventures of David Crockett (Putnam, 2005, Berkley Books, 2006); and Echoes On Rimrock: In Pursuit of the Chukar Partridge (Pruett, 1998). As a freelance journalist he has covered adventure sports and lifestyle around the world, including several Eco-Challenges and other adventure expeditions in Argentina, Borneo, Europe, Greenland, Morocco, and the Philippines. His magazine articles and essays have appeared in Backpacker, Big Sky Journal, Couloir, Discover, High Desert Journal, Poets & Writers, River Teeth, Ski, Trail Runner, Utne Reader, TV Guide, and VIA. He is clinical assistant professor of English at Washington State University, and lives in northern Idaho with his wife Camie, his children Logan and Hunter, and two black Labs.
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