Tuesday my girlfriend came home from the library with this book for me.
The book is called The Road to Samarcand, written by Patrick O’Brian in the early 1950’s but published for the first time in the U.S. only this past month. After I got over my initial Surprise (hah!) of seeing a POB book that I had never heard of and confirmed that it indeed was by him, I sat down and read the book’s description on the cover flap.
To compare me to a kid on Christmas, after I’d read this, would be a gross understatement. An Indiana Jones type story written by POB, complete with exotic locales, a treasure hunt, myth, and murderous intrigue? Its like a dream come true. My life lacked meaning before I heard of this book.
I’ve been busy, so as of now, I’m only about 1/4 of the way into the book. So far it has lived up to my expectations. The actual character of the archaeologist is sort of an anti-Indiana Jones, more like Marcus Brodie in the 3rd film than anything. POB does a masterful job of writing him though, and the character is hilarious. The only complaint I have about the book so far is that it seems like POB wrote it for a young adult audience and at times it has a Hardy Boys like feel to it. Some might also take issue with the character of Liu Han who is the most egregious Chinese stereotype since the 7 Faces of Dr. Lao. He, however, is also written with POB’s tremendous wit.
For anyone who loves POB, and adventure stories in general, I highly recommend this book.