River of Darkness
In River of Darkness, Levy masterfully retells the story of Francisco Orellana’s legendary voyage down the Amazon River in 1541. Based on the true exploits of the Spanish conquistadors and relying heavily on primary and historical sources, Mr. Levy has woven together a riveting adventure of the first Europeans’ encounter with the tribes of the Amazon region. Intent on finding the legendary El Dorado as well as a source for the spice cinnamon, Orellana and his men unintentionally begin a journey that results in their exploring the entire length of the river. The hardships they encounter on their nine-month effort at survival are more harrowing than anything a modern fiction writer could create. As a historical side note, this story, and Levy’s resources regarding the once-called River of the Amazons, again offers evidence for the existence of a ruling warrior class of women living in the South American jungle. River of Darkness is an old-fashioned page-turner and is highly recommended.