The Road to Samarcand by Patrick O'Brian
An Adventure

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Synopsis

O'Brian's richly told adventure saga, with its muscular prose, supple dialogue and engaging characters, packs a nice old-school punch." --Publishers Weekly


This story begins where Patrick O'Brian's devoted fans would want it to, with a sloop in the South China Sea barely surviving a killer typhoon. The time is the 1930s and the protagonist a teenaged American boy whose missionary parents have just died. In the company of his rough seafaring uncle and an elderly English cousin, an eminent archaeologist, Derrick sets off in search of ancient treasures in central Asia.


Along the way they encounter a charismatic Chinese bandit and a host of bad characters, including Russian agents fomenting unrest. The narrative touches on surprising subjects: astronomy, oriental philosophy, the correct identification of ancient Han bronzes, and some very local cuisine. It ends in an ice-bound valley, with the party caught between hostile Red-Hat monks and the Great Silent Ones, the Tibetan designation for the yeti.

 

About Patrick O'Brian

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Patrick O'Brian is the author of twenty volumes in the highly respected Aubrey/Maturin series of novels.
 
Published December 17, 2008 by W. W. Norton & Company. 271 pages
Genres: History, Action & Adventure, Literature & Fiction, Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Travel, Children's Books, Crime. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for The Road to Samarcand

Kirkus Reviews

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Only much later, when the group is forced to enter a valley in Tibet haunted by the Abominable Snowman and three of the group are left for dead, does the action have real bite.

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Publishers Weekly

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Years before a top sailor named Jack Aubrey, rising through the ranks of the British Navy during the Napoleonic Wars, joined forces with his best friend-an Irish-Spanish doctor, naturalist and spy called Stephen Maturin-to make the seas safe and profitable for the British Empire, another young sp...

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Billings Gazette

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Reader Rating for The Road to Samarcand
70%

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