River of Doubt

Millard, Candice. River of Doubt: Theodore Roosevelt’s Darkest Journey. Read by Paul Michael. Westminster, MD: Books on Tape, 2005.

Reason: Theodore Roosevelt was the first American to win a Nobel Prize.

Millard paints Roosevelt’s biography in broad strokes, reviewing his fragile health as a child, the loss of his mother and wife in the same 24 hours (Valentine’s Day of all days), and his need to push his physical limits when faced with tragedies or failures. It is this need that sets the stage for Millard’s true focus: Roosevelt’s South American expedition to an uncharted tributary of the Amazon. He refused to go where everyone else had trod and yet, he expected the excursion to be ho-hum and without incident. Silly man. Millard’s account of the expedition has it all, excitement, adventure, violence, death and madness.

As an aside, can I just say I loved the fact that packed among Roosevelt’s supplies was a bottle of Tabasco? Not just hot sauce, but Tabasco by name.

Author fact: Millard used to be the editor for National Geographic Magazine.

Book trivia: My favorite photograph in River of Doubt is one of Kermit. His piercing stare says it all.

Audio trivia: Paul Michael’s accents are great.

Nancy said: “fast paced, well written and difficult to put down” (p 17). I would definitely agree.

BookLust Twist: from Book Lust To Go in the obvious chapter called “Amazonia” (p 17).



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