Darwin Slept Here: Discovery, Adventure, and Swimming Iguanas in Charles Darwin's South America

Darwin Slept Here Discovery Adventure and Swimming Iguanas in Charles Darwin s South America One snowy day in Ushuaia Argentina the self proclaimed southernmost city in the world at the end of the long trip designed to put as much distance as possible between himself and a frustrating post

  • Title: Darwin Slept Here: Discovery, Adventure, and Swimming Iguanas in Charles Darwin's South America
  • Author: Eric Simons
  • ISBN: 9781590202203
  • Page: 294
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Darwin Slept Here: Discovery, Adventure, and Swimming Iguanas in Charles Darwin's South America

    One snowy day in Ushuaia, Argentina, the self proclaimed southernmost city in the world, at the end of the long trip designed to put as much distance as possible between himself and a frustrating post college job, Eric Simons picked up a copy of Charles Darwin s The Voyage of the Beagle Simons had just hiked the mountains overlooking Beagle Channel, and he found himsel One snowy day in Ushuaia, Argentina, the self proclaimed southernmost city in the world, at the end of the long trip designed to put as much distance as possible between himself and a frustrating post college job, Eric Simons picked up a copy of Charles Darwin s The Voyage of the Beagle Simons had just hiked the mountains overlooking Beagle Channel, and he found himself engrossed in Darwin s account Like Simons, Darwin was in his mid twenties when he traveled to the continent Struck by the simularity, Simons found himslef compelled to journey further into South America to explore the histories, legends and people that had fascinated Darwin himself two centuries before 150 years after the publication of The Origin of Species, Darwin Slept Here journeys in the footsteps of one of the fathers of modern science In this fresh eyed and innovative work of history and travel, Eric Simmons reclaims the past of South America and brings Charles Darwin into the future.

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    One thought on “Darwin Slept Here: Discovery, Adventure, and Swimming Iguanas in Charles Darwin's South America

    1. Jim

      At first, I didn't think too much of the atmosphere of collegiate high spirits that characterizes this book. There are too many derivative travel books in which a writer today follows in some famous writer's or traveler's footsteps. They never seem, however, to arrive at what made the original work so admirable. Charles Darwin's The Voyage of the Beagle is a wonderful book, because the English naturalist visited South America when it was far wilder and more strange than it is today. As the book [...]

    2. Brian

      I thought this book lacked a great deal. I found his adventuring to be rather tame, his connections to Darwin to be weak and his writing style to be pedestrian. I found myself always wanting more about Darwin or more about the places visited but instead readers get anecdotes from his friend Josh (who actually seemed more interesting than the author) or exaggerations of the road quality, the rental car workers disbelief or challenging "peaks" summited. I guess I should of picked up a book by some [...]

    3. Daniel

      I picked this book up from the library on a whim; the combination of a South American travelogue and following in Darwin's footsteps intrigued me. I wasn't disappointed. This book taught me a bit about Darwin, while also providing an entertaining view of the author's travels. I appreciate how Simons juxtaposes the land and people from Darwin's time with those of the present day. He liberally sprinkles quotes from Darwin's diary throughout his account, giving his journey a sense of purpose and de [...]

    4. Holly

      I found this book to be mildly entertaining and enjoyable but not too exciting. It was a quick read and had some interesting descriptions of the South American landscape and the author was sometimes pretty funny. Not my favorite non-fiction read by any means but it was a quick and informative read.

    5. Jrobertus

      The authors follows parts of Darwin's 3-year journey in South America. He begins in Brazil where Darwin was amazed and overwhelmed by the beauty of the jungle and appalled by the slavery. Indeed, he became a major anti-slavery spokesman as a result. The story moves down to Patagonia and the boring scenery there, although the archaeology was informative. The culmination is at Tierra del Fuego and the abysmal weather and plight of the Indians. It turns out the Beagle captain, Fitzroy, had picked u [...]

    6. Carl Wells

      I chose this book because I wanted to be thrilled by exotic south american travel stories with a tinge science/history seriousness. Plus side was that it was very easy to read, and I was inspired by the thrill of exploring new places even in unglamorous destinations. It made me laugh out loud many times. Also, this book gave me a surprisingly keen sense of seeing the world through the eyes of a young Darwin with nothing more serious on his mind than exploring the world and coming to grips with i [...]

    7. Donna Jo Atwood

      Simons traveled to many spots Charles Darwin visited in Argentina and Chile. Instead of taking a ship, Simons travels mostly by bus. This account mixes his take on those places, many of them largely unchanged physically, with Darwin's thoughts as recorded in his diary and later book The Voyage of the Beagle. Simons comes across as funny, curious, and oddly naive in places--as does Darwin, but then, both of them were young men traveling outside their comfort zone.I enjoyed the book--and now I nee [...]

    8. Lump

      I found the book to be pretty contrived - his whole premise, following in Darwin's footsteps, came off as just an excuse for a journalism student to take a cool trip. His accounts of places he went, the questions he asked people in those places ("what do people here think if Darwin"??), and even his connection with and interest in Darwin seemed quite superficial, and not much more than a topic he chose for a school project.

    9. Jake Forbes

      If you're looking for a detailed account of Darwin's journey, stick to the Journey of the Beagle. This book celebrates the timelessness of adventure and discovery for those who open their eyes to possibilities and at that is succeeds in spades. It's a breezy read; often I was sad to see Simons jump to his next location so quickly, but that's more a testament to his affable prose than a criticism of his pacing.

    10. William

      A quick enjoyable read. Very light and humorous but informative. I liked the interplay between Darwin's travels and the author's modern travel in South America. The author does not try to go into much detail but kind of skims along the highlights in a delightful fashion. It is surprising how nice the people he met were to a Gringo California American. It must have fun to be a young (in 20s) carefree adventurer as were both Darwin in 1830s and the author, Eric, 170+ years later.

    11. Steven

      An interesting look at South America viewed through the eyes of a young journalist following in the footsteps of Charles Darwin. The book is primarily a travelogue but also includes insight into how Darwin's travels shaped his ideas. The book also gave a good look into how South American culture has changed in the ~180 years since the voyage of the HMS Beagle.

    12. Dan Vine

      A travelogue based on Darwin's travels in South America. Remaindered at Readings for $7. Readable enough. There are some interesting and thoughtful parts early on but a tendency to that hokey dialogue that seems to be favoured by North American journalists. From about halfway through I found myself thinking that I should be reading The Voyage of the Beagle myself.

    13. Jeff J.

      Essentially a travelogue, but with a twist. The author travels through South America following the path of Charles Darwin and offers commentary on the contemporary relevance of the journey of the Beagle. This will never be a definitive travel guide, but offers some interesting insights.

    14. Carlos Vallarino

      I liked the spirit of youthfulness of this book, how he made one be part of the scenery, and all that latino stuff one can relate too. I had all but forgotten about Chadwick who is quoted in the book, makes me want to check about Patagonia again.

    15. Glenn Robinson

      A fun travelogue of one man's quest to see each small town and trail that Darwin visited while on his 5 year journey on the Beagle doing research for what became of his famous treatise. Nothing Earth shattering, just a fun, easy book on Argentina, Chile, Peru and the Galapagos

    16. LeeAnn Heringer

      Mildly interesting as a companion book for Darwin's original "Voyage of the Beagle". Interesting to see how his adventures translate into the 20th / 21st century.

    17. Jean

      Quick, fun read. After finishing the book, I wanted to go hiking in the rain. I would love to have a beer with young Charles Darwin and Eric Simons.

    18. Anita

      This is a solid and entertaining travelogue of a twenty-something. Obviously a smart and capable writer, looking forward to what he does next (and what adventures he pursues).

    19. John

      Interesting travel narrative, though at times it seemed the author had to really work to get in the Darwin connection.

    20. Eva

      Expected more about the authors experience in the Galapagos Islands, but it did not quite get there. Still it made me laugh. Sweet quick read.

    21. Turi

      A fun excursion through modern South America, retracing some of Charles Darwin's voyages. Good insight into Darwin, youth and travel.

    22. Stephanie

      Fun book. I read this as an entertaining and easy introduction to Voyage of the Beagle and the young Darwin, and it served that purpose quite well.

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