The Lost City of Z
by David Grann
Obsession. David Grann, a journalist, sets out to write about the life of Colonel Percy Fawcett and his treks into the Amazon jungle for the Royal Geographical Society. Fawcett becomes obsessed with the idea of a lost civilization, as many have done, in the Amazon jungles which adheres to the legends of a city of gold and riches.
Interspersed with the stories of failed journeys by Fawcett and other crews, Grann lives his own obsession bringing us along for the ride. Given the horrors of trekking through the Amazon, and the fate of so many before him, I felt like a person staring at a car accident but not wanting to look. In the end, Grann's book enlightens more the seduction of discovery for these men than the actual findings. The findings, though astounding, wan in the wake of the near addict obsession of the trek itself.
I am exceedingly grateful that Grann wrote the book for the reason that I loved the trek, the fascination with this obsession, but you would not catch me following such a path unless it were in the form of written words. The book itself carries the expected journalistic style from the author, though it drags in some places and jumps about a bit, the conveyance of each man's feverish need to go routing about in a dangerous jungle kept me pleased and reading.