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Adventurers & Explorers

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  1. 4.6 hrs • 8/30/2016 • Unabridged

    The maestro storyteller and reporter provocatively argues that what we think we know about speech and human evolution is wrong. Tom Wolfe, whose legend began in journalism, takes us on an eye-opening journey that is sure to arouse widespread debate. The Kingdom of Speech is a captivating, paradigm-shifting argument that speech—not evolution—is responsible for humanity’s complex societies and achievements. From Alfred Russel Wallace, the Englishman who beat Darwin to the theory of natural selection but later renounced it, and through the controversial work of modern-day anthropologist Daniel Everett, who defies the current wisdom that language is hard-wired in humans, Wolfe examines the solemn, long-faced, laugh-out-loud zig-zags of Darwinism, old and Neo, and finds it irrelevant here in the Kingdom of Speech.

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    The Kingdom of Speech

    4.6 hrs • 8/30/16 • Unabridged
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  2. 3.5 hrs • 7/28/2016 • Unabridged

    Buffalo Bill was arguably, the most recognized man in the world when he penned this book. The first four stories are of some of his adventures and the remaining 6 are autobiographical. All of them have been proved to be historically accurate in all important aspects. From his service as chief scout for the 3rd Cavalry during the plains wars, to his pony express service and finally the story of how he got his nickname “Buffalo Bill”, everything is larger than life. Killing 4,280 buffalo in 18 months for the railroad workers was an amazing feat. Follow along as he tells of his Indian campaigns and then his world famous “Wild West Show” later in life. The foreword gives a brief summary of this man’s amazing life. He respected the Indians and urged equal rights for women, something amazing in itself for his time.

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    The Adventures of Buffalo Bill

    3.5 hrs • 7/28/16 • Unabridged
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  3. 10.8 hrs • 7/12/2016 • Unabridged

    Raw, vivid, and emotional—the nineteenth century first-person account of one woman’s struggles and triumphs taming the Mississippi Delta.Near the end of her life, Mary Mann Hamilton (1866–c.1936) was encouraged to record her experience as a female pioneer. The result is the only known first-hand account of a woman thrust into the center of taming the American South—surviving floods, tornadoes, and fires; facing bears, panthers, and snakes; all while caring for her children, several of whom didn’t survive despite her efforts. The extreme hard work and tragedy she faced are eclipsed only by her strength and faith in her husband, a mysterious Englishman, and by her sense of adventure. Written in frank and expressive prose, and withheld for almost a lifetime, Trials of the Earth speaks to the heart of our ability to endure and will resonate with listeners of history and fiction alike.

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    Trials of the Earth

    10.8 hrs • 7/12/16 • Unabridged
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  4. 9.1 hrs • 7/5/2016 • Unabridged

    A rich and revelatory memoir of a young woman confronting her fears and finding home in the North. Blair Braverman fell in love with the North at an early age: by the time she was nineteen, she had left her home in California, moved to Norway to learn how to drive sled dogs, and worked as a tour guide on a glacier in Alaska. By turns funny and sobering, bold and tender, Welcome to the Goddamn Ice Cube charts Blair’s endeavor to become a “tough girl”—someone who courts danger in an attempt to become fearless. As she ventures into a ruthless arctic landscape, Blair faces down physical exhaustion—being buried alive in an ice cave, and driving a dogsled across the tundra through a whiteout blizzard in order to avoid corrupt police—and grapples with both love and violence as she negotiates the complex demands of being a young woman in a man’s land. Brilliantly original and bracingly honest, Welcome to the Goddamn Ice Cube captures the triumphs and the perils of the journey to self-discovery and independence in a landscape that is as beautiful as it is unforgiving.

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    Welcome to the Goddamn Ice Cube by Blair Braverman

    Welcome to the Goddamn Ice Cube

    9.1 hrs • 7/5/16 • Unabridged
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  5. 1 reviews 0 5 5 5 out of 5 stars 5/5 (1)
    16.6 hrs • 4/26/2016 • Unabridged

    The extraordinary true story of the rediscovery of the Mayan civilization. In the tradition of The Lost City of Z and Empire of Ice, comes the forgotten tale of 19th century American John Lloyd Stephens’s quest to uncover and understand the ancient world’s most advanced civilization amid the jungles of Central America. Imagine The Lost City of Z, except the fabled lost jungle civilization really was found—an “Egypt in the Americas” in which 1,500-year-old pyramids and temples were hidden in impenetrable tropical forests, along with evidence of astonishingly sophisticated art, writing, science, and culture. In 1839, when John Lloyd Stephens, a dashing U.S. special ambassador to Central America, and Frederick Catherwood, an acclaimed British architect and draftsman, set out into the unexplored jungles of the Yucatan, Charles Darwin was aboard the H.M.S. Beagle, the Bible was the basic template of history, and most people believed the world was less than 6,000 years old. Deep in the jungles, they stumbled upon the wondrous ruins of the Mayan civilization—an astonishing find that would change western understanding of human history. In Jungle of Stone, William Carlsen uncovers the rich history of the ruins as he follows Stephens and Catherwood’s journey through present day Guatemala, Honduras, and Mexico. Drawing upon Stephens’s journals and Cather’s magnificent illustrations—which became the bestselling book Incidents of Travel in Yucatan—Carlsen artfully tells the enthralling story of two great voyagers and the world they discovered.

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    Jungle of Stone by William Carlsen

    Jungle of Stone

    16.6 hrs • 4/26/16 • Unabridged
    1 reviews 0 5 5 5 out of 5 stars 5/5 (1)
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  6. 8.5 hrs • 3/1/2016 • Unabridged

    On October 13, 1972, a Uruguayan Air Force plane carrying members of the “Old Christians” rugby team—and many of their friends and family members—crashed into the Andes Mountains. I Had to Survive offers a gripping and heartrending recollection of the harrowing brink-of-death experience that propelled survivor Roberto Canessa to become one of the world’s leading pediatric cardiologists. As he tended to his wounded teammates amid the devastating carnage of the wreck, rugby player Roberto Canessa, a second-year medical student at the time, realized that no one on earth was luckier: he was alive—and for that, he should be eternally grateful. As the starving group struggled beyond the limits of what seemed possible, Canessa played a key role in safeguarding his fellow survivors, eventually trekking with a companion across the hostile mountain range for help. This fine line between life and death became the catalyst for the rest of his life. This uplifting tale of hope and determination, solidarity and ingenuity gives vivid insight into a world-famous story. Canessa also draws a unique and fascinating parallel between his work as a doctor performing arduous heart surgeries on infants and unborn babies and the difficult life-changing decisions he was forced to make in the Andes. With grace and humanity, Canessa prompts us to ask ourselves, what do you do when all the odds are stacked against you?

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    I Had to Survive by Dr. Roberto Canessa, Pablo Vierci

    I Had to Survive

    Translated by Carlos Frías
    8.5 hrs • 3/1/16 • Unabridged
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  7. 2.6 hrs • 2/16/2016 • Unabridged

    In this exciting adventure mixed with amazing scientific discovery, a young, exuberant explorer and geoscientist journeys deep into the Amazon—where rivers boil and legends come to life. When Andrés Ruzo was just a small boy in Peru, his grandfather told him the story of a mysterious legend: there is a river, deep in the Amazon, which boils as if a fire burns below it. It was a story that would haunt Ruzo his entire childhood. Twenty years later, Ruzo—now a geoscientist—hears his aunt mention that she herself had visited this strange river. Determined to prove the river must be merely legend, Ruzo sets out on a journey deep into the Amazon. But what he finds astounds him: in this long, wide, and winding river, the waters run so hot that locals brew tea in them; small animals that fall in are instantly cooked. Over the next few years, Ruzo returns again and again, trying to uncover the secret. As he studies alongside the locals, including a shaman that acts as his mentor, Ruzo faces challenges more complex than he had ever imagined. The tangle of competing interests—locals, illegal cattle farmers, logging and oil companies, and government interests—all have a stake in this land where the waters run so hot. The Boiling River follows this young explorer as he navigates scientific, political, and personal obstacles. This true account reads like a modern-day adventure, complete with extraordinary characters, stunning vistas, captivating plot twists, and jaw-dropping details—including stunning photographs and never-before-published research about this incredible natural wonder. Ultimately, though, The Boiling River is about a man trying to understand his moral obligation to protect a sacred site from misuse, neglect, and even from his own discovery.

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    The Boiling River

    2.6 hrs • 2/16/16 • Unabridged
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  8. 0 reviews 0 5 4 4 out of 5 stars 4/5
    7.1 hrs • 11/17/2015 • Unabridged

    As told to journalist Jonathan Franklin in dozens of exclusive interviews, 438 Days is the miraculous account of the man who survived alone and adrift at sea longer than anyone in recorded history. On November 17, 2012, Salvador Alvarenga left the coast of Mexico for a two-day fishing trip. A vicious storm killed his engine and the current dragged his boat out to sea. The storm picked up and blasted him west. When he washed ashore on January 29, 2014, he had arrived in the Marshall Islands, nine thousand miles away—equivalent to traveling from New York to Moscow round trip. For fourteen months, Alvarenga survived constant shark attacks. He learned to catch fish with his bare hands. He built a fish net from a pair of empty plastic bottles. Taking apart the outboard motor, he fashioned a huge fishhook. Using fish vertebrae as needles, he stitched together his own clothes. He considered suicide on multiple occasions—including offering himself up to a pack of sharks. But Alvarenga never failed to invent an alternative reality. He imagined a method of survival that kept his body and mind intact long enough for the Pacific Ocean to toss him up on a remote palm-studded island, where he was saved by a local couple living alone in their own Pacific Island paradise. Based on dozens of hours of interviews with Alvarenga and interviews with his colleagues, search and rescue officials, the medical team that saved his life and the remote islanders who nursed him back to health, 438 Days is an epic tale of survival, an all-true version of the fictional Life of Pi, a study of the resilience, will, ingenuity, and determination required for one man to survive fourteen months lost at sea.

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    438 Days

    7.1 hrs • 11/17/15 • Unabridged
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  9. 9.5 hrs • 10/27/2015 • Unabridged

    A portrait in her own words of the female Lawrence of Arabia, the subject of the upcoming major motion picture Queen of the Desert, starring Nicole Kidman, James Franco, Damian Lewis, and Robert Pattinson, and directed by Werner HerzogGertrude Bell was leaning in 100 years before Sheryl Sandberg. One of the great woman adventurers of the twentieth century, she turned her back on Victorian society to study at Oxford and travel the world, and became the chief architect of British policy in the Middle East after World War I. Mountaineer, archaeologist, Arabist, writer, poet, linguist, and spy, she dedicated her life to championing the Arab cause and was instrumental in drawing the borders that define today’s Middle East. As she wrote in one of her letters, “It’s a bore being a woman when you are in Arabia.” Forthright and spirited, opinionated and playful, and deeply instructive about the Arab world, this volume brings together Bell’s letters, military dispatches, diary entries, and travel writings to offer an intimate look at a woman who shaped nations.

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    A Woman in Arabia

    Edited and with an introduction by Georgina Howell
    9.5 hrs • 10/27/15 • Unabridged
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  10. 10.3 hrs • 10/6/2015 • Unabridged

    From Frederick Forsyth, the grand master of international suspense, comes his most intriguing story ever—his own. For more than forty years, Frederick Forsyth has been writing extraordinary real-world novels of intrigue, from the groundbreaking The Day of the Jackal to the prescient The Kill List. Whether writing about the murky world of arms dealers, the shadowy Nazi underground movement, or the intricacies of worldwide drug cartels, every plot has been chillingly plausible because every detail has been minutely researched. But what most people don’t know is that some of his greatest stories of intrigue have been in his own life. He was the RAF’s youngest pilot at the age of nineteen, barely escaped the wrath of an arms dealer in Hamburg, got strafed by a MiG during the Nigerian civil war, landed during a bloody coup in Guinea-Bissau (and was accused of helping fund a 1973 coup in Equatorial Guinea). The Stasi arrested him, the Israelis feted him, the IRA threatened him, and a certain attractive Czech secret police agent—well, her actions were a bit more intimate. And that’s just for starters. It is a memoir like no other—and a book of pure delight.

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    The Outsider

    10.3 hrs • 10/6/15 • Unabridged
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  11. 11.3 hrs • 9/29/2015 • Unabridged

    From Alexander von Humboldt to Charles and Anne Lindbergh, these are stories of people of great vision and daring whose achievements continue to inspire us today, brilliantly told by master historian David McCullough. The bestselling author of Truman and John Adams, David McCullough has written profiles of exceptional men and women past and present who have not only shaped the course of history or changed how we see the world but whose stories express much that is timeless about the human condition. Here are Alexander von Humboldt, whose epic explorations of South America surpassed the Lewis and Clark expedition; Harriet Beecher Stowe, “the little woman who made the big war”; Frederic Remington; the extraordinary Louis Agassiz of Harvard; Charles and Anne Lindbergh, and their fellow long-distance pilots Antoine de Saint-Exupéry and Beryl Markham; Harry Caudill, the Kentucky lawyer who awakened the nation to the tragedy of Appalachia; and David Plowden, a present-day photographer of vanishing America. Different as they are from each other, McCullough’s subjects have in common a rare vitality and sense of purpose. These are brave companions: to each other, to David McCullough, and to the reader, for with rare storytelling ability McCullough brings us into the times they knew and their very uncommon lives

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    Brave Companions

    11.3 hrs • 9/29/15 • Unabridged
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  12. 1.1 hrs • 9/14/2015 • Unabridged

    Matthew Henson’s destiny was set when he met naval officer Robert Edwin Peary in 1887. An African American son of poor farmers, Henson shared Peary’s desire to be the first person to reach the North Pole. In 1909, the men set out on one of their many voyages together. They battled sub-zero temperatures, deadly ice formations, and bone-chilling winds. Many times it was Henson who saved the expedition with his knowledge of Inuit language and culture. But when the men finally achieved their goal, few people believed them. Worse still, because Henson was black, he was seen as nothing more than Peary’s manservant. This exceptional biography from noted author and educator Dolores Johnson tells the full story of Henson’s extraordinary life, from his humble and self-taught beginnings, to his proper recognition as Peary’s equal.

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    Onward

    1.1 hrs • 9/14/15 • Unabridged
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  13. 5.4 hrs • 8/25/2015 • Unabridged

    An insider takes listeners into the thrilling and dangerous world of smokejumpers, the elite wilderness firefighters who parachute into the most remote and rugged areas of the United States, risking their lives to fight nature’s deadliest blazes. An elite crew of firefighters employed by the Department of the Interior, smokejumpers are specially trained to fight monstrous fires in the deepest wilderness at a moment’s notice—in inaccessible terrain where conventional firefighting is impossible. Highly trained, they parachute from helicopters into the heart of the combustion, often alone or with the aid of just a single partner. But it’s not just a skill; being a smokejumper is an art. Forest fires often behave in unpredictable ways: spreading almost instantaneously, shooting downhill behind a stiff tailwind, or even flowing like a liquid. To stay alive, smokejumpers must combine knowledge of the terrain, meteorological and ground conditions, and their own judgment and instincts to survive. In this exciting, eye-opening memoir, Jason A. Ramos reveals what it takes to do this remarkable job, recounting his career from his humble beginnings as a seventeen-year-old city kid working for the Riverside County Fire Department to becoming one of the top smokejumpers in the world, a position he’s held for twenty-five years. Ramos weaves a compelling history of wilderness firefighting, takes us through the brutal training it requires, and explains the psychological strength needed to go to work each day knowing it could be your last. Here are some of his most harrowing missions—when the ground is so hot that truck axles melt and a split-second decision can mean the difference between living and dying. Smokejumper takes us deep into burning forests—and into the heart of a dedicated fire fighter as never before.

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    Smokejumper

    Foreword by John Maclean
    Read by Ned Vaughn
    5.4 hrs • 8/25/15 • Unabridged
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  14. 10.2 hrs • 8/20/2015 • Unabridged

    Anatoli Boukreev’s first-hand account of the worst human disaster in the history of Mt. Everest will hold listeners spellbound. A top-rated guide and high altitude climber, Boukreev dictated the raw and powerful details of this ill-fated trek from memories and notes recorded just five days after the catastrophe. In May of 1996, thirty-three people went up the mountain, but only twenty-eight returned. As two commercial expeditions climbed the world’s highest peak, poor planning, miscommunication, and an unpredictable blizzard conspired to defeat them. Although the author made it back to the safety of his tent, he defied his own pain and exhaustion to go back up the mountain. His rescue attempt saved the lives of three climbers. The events of those two fateful days prompted researchers at MIT to develop new technology that could prevent the recurrence of such a disaster.

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    The Climb

    10.2 hrs • 8/20/15 • Unabridged
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  15. 9.7 hrs • 8/20/2015 • Unabridged

    New York Times bestselling author Martin Dugard writes the first account of Columbus’s little-known last voyage. Columbus’ famed 1492 expedition wasn’t his last. After tough times, he was given one more chance. But this voyage didn’t have the fortuitous accidents of 1492. Instead it brought a shipwreck and more violence and mutiny than ever before—pushing an aging explorer to his limit.

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    The Last Voyage of Columbus

    9.7 hrs • 8/20/15 • Unabridged
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  16. 0 reviews 0 5 4 4 out of 5 stars 4/5
    18.7 hrs • 2/28/2015 • Unabridged

    In Life on the Mississippi, the great American humorist Mark Twain recounts his journeys on the mighty Mississippi river. Covering the beginnings of his career as steamboat pilot, Twain entertains us with his wit, anecdotes, and wild stories of the myriad characters and adventures he encounters.  From a brief history of the Mississippi, we are taken on to a recollection of the river life with its rich history and engaging narrative. Life on the Mississippi will appeal to newcomers and fans of Twain alike.

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    Life on the Mississippi

    18.7 hrs • 2/28/15 • Unabridged
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