Book Review: The Lost City Of The Monkey God By Douglas Preston

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Who says there’s nothing left to discover in this world . . . you just have to be willing to suffer the consequences to do so! Adventure abounds as a team of explores embark into the Guatemalan rainforest, into an area where man abandoned over 500 years before – but why? Was it the abundance of lethal fer-de-lance snakes? The many potentially deadly diseases carried transmitted by insects? Or was there a more sinister reason?

This true story details how cutting edge science was used to discover forgotten cities long reclaimed by the jungle, and how, despite our advances, the challenges they present test our capabilities to this day. This book had me ready to strap on some snake gaiters and go for a hike . . . until it didn’t. I think I’ll leave the exploration to others, but I loved reading about their journey!

From Goodreads:

NAMED A NEW YORK TIMES NOTABLE BOOK OF 2017#1 New York Times and #1 Wall Street Journal bestseller!
A Best Book of 2017 from the Boston GlobeOne of the 12 Best Books of the Year from National GeographicIncluded in Lithub‘s Ultimate Best Books of 2017 ListA Favorite Science Book of 2017 from Science News
A five-hundred-year-old legend. An ancient curse. A stunning medical mystery. And a pioneering journey into the unknown heart of the world’s densest jungle.

Since the days of conquistador Hernán Cortés, rumors have circulated about a lost city of immense wealth hidden somewhere in the Honduran interior, called the White City or the Lost City of the Monkey God. Indigenous tribes speak of ancestors who fled there to escape the Spanish invaders, and they warn that anyone who enters this sacred city will fall ill and die. In 1940, swashbuckling journalist Theodore Morde returned from the rainforest with hundreds of artifacts and an electrifying story of having found the Lost City of the Monkey God-but then committed suicide without revealing its location.

Three quarters of a century later, bestselling author Doug Preston joined a team of scientists on a groundbreaking new quest. In 2012 he climbed aboard a rickety, single-engine plane carrying the machine that would change everything: lidar, a highly advanced, classified technology that could map the terrain under the densest rainforest canopy. In an unexplored valley ringed by steep mountains, that flight revealed the unmistakable image of a sprawling metropolis, tantalizing evidence of not just an undiscovered city but an enigmatic, lost civilization.

Venturing into this raw, treacherous, but breathtakingly beautiful wilderness to confirm the discovery, Preston and the team battled torrential rains, quickmud, disease-carrying insects, jaguars, and deadly snakes. But it wasn’t until they returned that tragedy struck: Preston and others found they had contracted in the ruins a horrifying, sometimes lethal-and incurable-disease.

Suspenseful and shocking, filled with colorful history, hair-raising adventure, and dramatic twists of fortune, THE LOST CITY OF THE MONKEY GOD is the absolutely true, eyewitness account of one of the great discoveries of the twenty-first century.

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