Journey to the Amazon

A mix of fiction and nonfiction titles celebrating the 2010 ReaderNation: Adult Summer Reading Program theme.

Lima Nights

Marie Arana. Lima Nights
Carlos Bluhm leads a good, upper-class life in Lima. Then he meets Maria Fernandez, a Tango dancer and they begin a passionate affair that destroys his marriage and reality.

Spy: A Thriller

Ted Bell. Spy: A Thriller
In this relentlessly paced tale of international suspense, intrepid MI-6 intelligence officer Alex Hawke confronts an evil like no other. Terror looms as a madman works his dark magic in the heart of the Amazon and a nightmare erupts along the Mexican border, creating a deadly combination that threatens to bring America to its knees.

Little Tiny Teeth

Aaron J Elkins. Little Tiny Teeth
When forensics professor Gideon Oliver joins an Amazon riverboat expeditin with a group of research botanists, he expects a nice vacation. What he gets is heat, corrupt officials, dangerous insects and animals, and the realization that in this jungle full of predators, humans may be the deadliest of all.

Storm Front

Gabriel Garcia Marquez. Love in the Time of Cholera 
In their youth, Florentino Ariza and Fermina Daza fall passionately in love. When Fermina eventually chooses to marry a wealthy, well-born doctor, Florentino is devastated, but he is a romantic. As he rises in his business career he whiles away the years in 622 affairs--yet he reserves his heart for Fermina. Her husband dies at last, and Florentino purposefully attends the funeral. Fifty years, nine months, and four days after he first declared his love for Fermina, he will do so again.

One Hundred Years of Solitude

Gabriel Garcia Marquez. One Hundred Years of Solitude 
Tells the story of the rise and fall, birth and death of the mythical town of Macondo through the history of the Buendia family. Inventive, amusing, magnetic, sad, and alive with unforgettable men and women -- brimming with truth, compassion, and a lyrical magic that strikes the soul -- this novel is a masterpiece in the art of fiction.

Heart of Fire

Linda Howard. Heart of Fire
Jillian Sherwood, an archaeologist on the verge of uncovering a fabulous lost Amazon city, faces off with Ben Lewis, the number-one river guide in Brazil.


W H Hudson. Green Mansions
A master of natural history writing, Hudson forms an important link between 19th-century Romanticism and the 20th-century ecological movement. First published in 1904, this book offers its readers a poignant meditation on the loss of wilderness and the dream of a return to nature.

Dark Prince

Rachael King. The Sound of Butterflies 
Written in rich, sensuous prose and ranging from the demure gentility of turn-of-the-century England to the lush, dangerous jungles of Brazil, "The Sound of Butterflies" is a breathtaking and compelling debut.

The Amazon Quest

Gilbert Morris. The Amazon Quest
Emily Winslow meets James Parker, the man who tried to save her brother's life in the trenches of World War I in France, and she and her family feel deeply indebted to him. They offer to help him in any way they can to get a new start after recovering from his own wounds. By the time the family is confronted with the surprising truth of what actually happened on that distant battlefield, Emily has fallen in love with James.

The Amazon Quest

Steven Pressfield. Last of the Amazons 
A fateful encounter between Theseus, king of Athens, and the tall Kyrte, a nation of proud female warriors, transforms the ancient world, when Antiope, warrior queen of the Amazons, falls in love with Theseus and flees with him.


James Rollins. Amazonia
The Rand scientific expedition entered the lush wilderness of the Amazon and never returned. Years later, one of its members has stumbled out of the world's most inhospitable rainforest--a former Special Forces soldier, scarred, mutilated, terrified, and mere hours from death, who went in with one arm missing...and came out with both intact. Unable to comprehend this inexplicable event, the government sends Nathan Rand into this impenetrable secret world of undreamed-of perils, to follow the trail of his vanished father...toward mysteries that must be solved at any cost. But the nightmare that is awaiting Nate and his team of scientists and seasoned U.S. Rangers dwarfs any danger they ancient, unspoken terror--a power beyond human imagining--that can forever alter the world beyond the dark, lethal confines of...Amazonia.

Now is the Time to Open Your Heart

Alice Walker. Now is the Time to Open Your Heart
The story of a woman's spiritual adventure that becomes a passage through time, a quest for self, and a collision with love. Kate has always been a wanderer.


Darryl Wimberley. Kaleidoscope
Jack Romaine finds himself an unwilling recruit for a Cincinnati gangster on the trail of stolen money, and finds himself amidst the "carnies" during offseason.

Amazon Gold

Dirk Wyle. Amazon Gold
This book is powered by medical science, business and anthropology, and driven by the professional challenges of a two-career couple. Ben Candidi, doctor in pharmacology, and medical doctor Rebecca Levis are reunited in this fourth ben candidi mystery, in a thriller that encompasses Miami, Florida, and the Amazon rainforest.

Amazon Extreme

Colin Angus. Amazon Extreme
The true story of three enthusiastic (but inexperienced) adventurers who attempt to become the first team to raft the entire length of the Amazon River–all 4,007 miles--and (barely) live to tell about it.

Living to Tell the Tale

Gabriel Garcia Marquez. Living to Tell the Tale 
It spans Garcia Marquez’s life from his birth in 1927 through the start of his career as a writer to the moment in the 1950s when he proposed to the woman who would become his wife.

Warriors, Gods and Spirits

Douglas Gifford. Warriors, Gods and Spirits 
An overview of Central and South American mythology.


Greg Grandin. Fordlandia
The stunning, never-before-told story of the quixotic attempt to recreate small-town America in the heart of the Amazon, "Fordlandia" depicts a desperate quest to salvage the bygone America that the Ford factory system did much to dispatch.

The Lost City of Z

David Grann. The Lost City of Z: A Tale of Deadly Obsession
Interweaves the story of British explorer Percy Fawcett, who vanished during a 1925 expedition into the Amazon, with the author's own quest to uncover the mysteries surrounding Fawcett's final journey and the secrets of what lies deep in the Amazon jungle.


HaiSong Harvey. Rain Forests 
Rain forests contain the greatest variety of animal and plant life on earth, and they are being destroyed more rapidly than any other type of wild habitat. Many environmentalists and scientists believe that almost all the rain forests will be eliminated in less than thirty years. Others continue to believe that the threat of their destruction is exaggerated. This anthology debates the threats to the rain forests and measures designed to ensure their continued existence.

Tree of Rivers

John Hemming. Tree of Rivers: The Story of the Amazon
This enthralling book brilliantly describes the passionate struggles that have taken place in order to utilize, protect and understand the wonder that is the Amazon. Hemmings riveting account recalls the adventures and misadventures down the centuries of the explorers, missionaries, indigenous Indians, naturalists, rubber barons, scientists, anthropologists, archaeologists, political extremists, prospectors and many more, who have been in thrall to the Amazon, the largest river in the world, with the greatest expanse of tropical rain forest and most luxuriant biological diversity on earth.

Running the Amazon

Joe Kane. Running the Amazon
The voyage began in the lunar terrain of the Peruvian Andes, where coca leaf is the only remedy against altitude sickness. It continued down rapids so fierce they could swallow a raft in a split second. It ended six months and 4,200 miles later, where the Amazon runs gently into the Atlantic. Joe Kane's personal account of the first expedition to travel the entirety of the world's longest river is a riveting adventure in the tradition of Joseph Conrad, filled with death-defying encounters.

The River of Doubt

Candace Millard. The River of Doubt 
At once an incredible adventure narrative and a penetrating biographical portrait,The River of Doubtis the true story of Theodore Roosevelt’s harrowing exploration of one of the most dangerous rivers on earth.

The End of the Spear

Steve Saint. End of the Spear 
Asked to return to Ecuador by the same tribe who killed his father and other missionaries 40 years earlier, Saint and his family try to help a Stone Age people transition to the 21st century. Their efforts lead to the discovery of the tribal intrigue behind the murders, resulting in very difficult decisions.

Entangled Edens

Candace Slater. Entangled Edens
A fascinating interrogation of stories and writings about the Amazon, by insiders (Indians, miners) and outsiders (explorers, scientists). Slater argues that these tales, examined together, show us an Amazon much more complex than "Save the Rain Forest" slogans--a vision that will allow us to save the Amazon in all its human and biological diversity.


Anthony Smith. Explorers of the Amazon
A riotously colorful history of adventures, chronicling more than 400 years in the exploration of the world's most formidable and enigmatic river system.

Amazon Sweet Sea

Nigel J H Smith. Amazon Sweet Sea
Far into the Atlantic Ocean, the outflow from the Amazon River creates a "sweet sea" of fresh water. At the river' mouth, a vast delta of river channels and marshes, floodplain and upland forests, open and scrub savannas, floating meadows, and mangrove swamps hosts an astonishingly diverse assemblage of plant and animal life. So rich is this biological treasure house that early European explorers deemed it inexhaustible.In this highly readable book, Nigel Smith explores how human use of the Amazon estuary' natural resources has been affected by technological change, rapid urban growth, and accelerated market integration.