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River of Death

3.35  ·  Rating Details ·  1,008 Ratings  ·  39 Reviews
Hamilton knows the way to the ruins deep in the Brazilian jungle - and the secrets they hold...

The millionaire who calls himself Smith seeks the lost city to avenge a wrong from his hidden past...

Their journey down the River of Death is an epic of violence and danger. But the secret that awaits them in the lost city is more dangerous still - as a legacy of theft, treachery
Mass Market Paperback, Fawcett Crest 20058-2, 215 pages
Published April 1983 by Ballantine Books (first published 1981)
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Jun 08, 2009 Robert rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I am working on giving a second chance to authors that I read during my school years and disliked, possibly because they were too demanding for me at the time.

One such author was Grahame Green; I started something and gave up on it, which is a rare occurrence for me. Last year I read Our Man in Havana and was thoroughly entertained - I have since acquired a copy of Brighton Rock which is patiently awaiting my attention.

Alistair MacLean was another writer who I tried and gave up on. Upon encounte
Pamela Mclaren
Jan 13, 2017 Pamela Mclaren rated it liked it
Shelves: mysteries, thriller
While this is a novel written more than 30 years ago which begins with Nazi officers ransacking a Greek monastery for personal gain, it soon becomes an action thriller as a group of men and a lone woman, all with something to hide, travel through the Brazilian jungle seeking a lost and mysterious city. This was great story telling and suspense that gradually builds as you get closer to the end but I have to say, I wondered where the Nazis come in. Never fear ... Alistair MacLean had all the stri ...more
Ellen (Elf TajMuttHall) Finch
In process notes: A very long time ago, I loved reading MacLean's books, but have strayed away from action/adventure and haven't reread any of his in many years. But they're in my bookcase and I decided to revisit.

This isn't off to a good start; the writing varies from purple prose ("A yellow moon, almost full, had just cleared the horizon and gave its soft and benign light to the softly rolling landscape, lending a magical quality to the otherwise harsh, forbidding outlines of the black and bro
Jun 12, 2011 Vishy rated it it was ok
I am a big Maclean fan, but this one was pretty disappointing. It is a book written during the later stages of his career, and it looked like he was just going through the motions. The premise of the story was interesting - two Nazis escape to Latin America with looted gold (or one does after cheating the other) and many years later a mysterious man seems to have discovered that gold and all kinds of strange people want to use his services. But unfortunately, the promise of the story stays unful ...more
Jeff Crosby
Like Athabasca, which I recently re-read, I remember very little abour River of Death, having read it back in 1982. This plot steps into more familiar territory, leaving behind the terrorist-extortion stories of The Golden Gate, Seawitch, Goodbye California, and Athabasca. Unfortunately, despite double dealings and ex-Nazis, the story doesn't work. MacLean is not comfortable in his Amazon setting, and he reused the plot to Fear Is the Key.

An okay story, but only for true fans.
Alistaire King
Read this many years ago and wasn't overly impressed. Have just finished re-reading and its better than I remember. Ok it's not great literature or even one of MacLeans' best but it's an easy and enjoyable read. One word of warning, irrespective of whether you like the book or not, a film was made of this book and it is truly terrible.
Jul 26, 2009 Jeff rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: action-spy
I read this book when I was younger and really enjoyed it a lot. I read it again this time and still enjoyed it but not as much. There was no real sense of danger or adventure in this reading for me. It was a little monotone. But it was a nice fast read and the basic story was good.
Ken Schloman
Clearly not one of MacLean's best works although he did return to a Nazi themed book that was common in his best works.
"Το ποτάμι του θανάτου", εκδόσεις ΒΙΠΕΡ.

Το πρώτο βιβλίο του Άλιστερ Μακλίν που διαβάζω, και μπορώ να πω ότι έμεινα αρκετά ευχαριστημένος. Μπόλικη περιπέτεια μέσα στις ζούγκλες του Αμαζονίου, πολλές σκηνές δράσης, με επικίνδυνα ζώα, ποτάμια και καταρράκτες, πολλούς εχθρικούς ινδιάνους και άλλα παρόμοια που συναντά κανείς σε εκείνα τα μέρη, και πολλά χρήσιμα πραγματάκια για επιβίωση μέσα στη ζούγκλα.

Επίσης η πλοκή ήταν αρκετά καλή και ενδιαφέρουσα, και οι διάφοροι χαρακτήρες του βιβλίου είχαν και
Chinmay Hota
Some twenty years ago every Indian (in South Asia) knew how to start a Bajaj scooter that ran out of fuel midway. It was a simple trick of just reclining the engine side of the scooter towards the ground and allowing the residual fuel in the engine to flow to the required place. It was a common sight on the roads those days.

Reading River of Death brought back memories of Bajaj days as the book appeared to me as the outcome of a convoluted effort on the part of a legendary writer to run the show
Scott Holstad
As I read MacLean's books, I'm discovering they're largely formulaic -- protagonist is mini-God, omnipotent and omniscient, female love interest is not what they seem to be, the bad guys are pretty bad but easily handled by the protagonist, lots of action which usually isn't remotely believable. This book is no exception. At least it's short. Hamilton, the protagonist, takes an expedition on a trip into a South American jungle in search of the Lost City, rumored to have a bajillion items in gold ...more
Wirotomo Nofamilyname
Buku #6 di tahun 2017.
Novel terjemahan. 216 halaman.
Bahasa Indonesia.

Dibaca setelah sadar bahwa ada beberapa novel Alistair MacLean di koleksi saya, dan belum ada satu pun yang saya baca. Jadi saya pilih lah novelnya yang paling tipis yang saya punya, dan baca.
Lumayan, ceritanya cukup seru, dan menegangkan. Lokasinya cukup eksotis, hutan tropis Amazon di Amerika Latin.
Cuma apa karena terlalu tipis (216 halaman sebenarnya nggak tipis-tipis banget juga sih ya), buat saya upaya penulis memaparkan k
Dec 18, 2011 Larissa rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Pretty disappointing, really. Alistair Maclean has many other much better novels, don't waste your time on this one. Not too much really happens, and while it includes the same basic plot and character points that all of his novels seem to have (possible romantic interest in the form of one or two women who are nearly always not what they seem, along with a few characters who are also secretly government agents/double crossers/even more villainous than initially revealed, etc.) it does than in a ...more
Example of the writing: "The chest contained literally thousands of golden coins, so fresh and gleaming they could have been minted that same day." And "A large, fat batman, the boss of the four men serving nonstop behind the bar,hurried forward. His egg-bald pate gleamed in the light: Inevitably, given the local gift for language, he was known as Curly."

I'm taking a forever break with this one. I'd only nabbed it from the little free library bc someone had left a dollar as a bookmark inside, an
Jun 07, 2010 Maura rated it it was ok
Shelves: action-adventure
fine? sorta forgettable, honestly. in fact, i kept putting it down for a few days between reads and kept forgetting who the heck everyone was (or might be, since everyone is being mighty evasive about just about everything). Might have worked better if I read it all in one sitting. I won't be searching out anything else by MacLean, and am sorta hoping that I don't have any more of his sitting on my shelf of hand-me-down books (so that I don't have to actively decide whether to read more by him).
Rohit Sharma
May 22, 2016 Rohit Sharma rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is the first thriller novel that I have read. Like me, if you are reading a thriller for the first time, and beginning this book, I would ask you to have some patience for the first two chapters. The plot is laid out pretty well. The story telling is very compelling.

The way in which each character is introduced and portrayed is very good.
The two main characters:
Hamilton - confident and a conversation controller, no one tells him what to do, he does what he wants how he wants.
"Bling Bling" S
Jan 22, 2015 Edward rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition

Hamilton knows the way to the ruins deep in the Brazilian jungle - and the secret they hold.

The millionaire who calls himself Smith seeks the lost city to avenge a wrong from his hidden past.

Their journey down the River of Death is an epic of violence and danger. But the secret that awaits them in the lost city is more dangerous still - as a legacy of theft, treachery and murder stretching back to war-torn Europe comes to a deadly climax beneath the ancient walls
Apr 30, 2015 Drew rated it liked it
Alistair MacLean writes good, straightforward action stories, and he does it well. His characters are clear and well-drawn, his dialogue is smooth and snappy, and the plots are very exciting. There aren't any side plots, there's very little subtext, and everything is clearly explained in the end. In short, they're great page-turners, and this story is a great example. It was fun.
Tim Ristow
Nice little jungle adventure story from Alistair Maclean! Gold, Nazi's, a group on a journey to a lost city, natives, traitors...its all a quick read but fun and filled with several last-minutes twists and surprises from Maclean. I kept picturing elements of this story as fitting into Indiana Jones 4. A great weekend read.
Satyavir Solanki
Good adventure novel on ww2 back ground, treasure looted by German SS men and Hamilton
trail and adventurous walk to chase culprit in Brazil's jungle .The novel has Alister Maclean's imprint on pace and fast sequences with last page story wrapping. A good read even in today time
Feb 03, 2014 Dave rated it liked it
Shelves: adventure
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Fredrick Danysh
Jun 30, 2011 Fredrick Danysh rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The jungles of Brazil have many hidden secrets. The millionaire calling himself Smith searches for a lost city where he hopes to avenge an incident from his hidden past. Along with Hamilton he will brave the dangers of the river and the jungle to reach their goals.
Jan 07, 2016 John rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is pretty much what you might expect (Nazi's, Gold, Lost Civilization, Espionage) but that is not a bad thing. great literature? No - but it is entertaining. Ideal for an easy vacation read. It is nothing more than it pretends to be which is a fun, light read. At that it succeeds.
Ronald Ward
Apr 30, 2014 Ronald Ward rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The main character reminds of Clarke Gable.

More mystery and intrigue than action, though when there is some it is well balanced, fitting. Frank L Packard's The Gold Skull Murders is in a similar vein, with the emphasis on investigation/mystery/plot.

Different to his other books. Better.
Monte Lamb
Mar 29, 2016 Monte Lamb rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: novels
Easy to read book on finding Nazis in South America. It is about one good afternoon's read and it is entertaining.
Apr 26, 2011 Suby rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Not as powerful as many other Nazi hunting stories I have read by other authors.
Sep 23, 2012 Bob rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Very predictable, cardboard characters. Lacking excitement and originality. McLean is much better than this
May 20, 2007 kranti rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
a nice book, takes you into the jungles of the amazon, lets you meet the tribes and know them!
Sidharth Aravinth
Bear Island shifted to Amazonian Jungles.
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Alistair Stuart MacLean (Scottish Gaelic: Alasdair MacGill-Eain), the son of a Scots Minister, was brought up in the Scottish Highlands. In 1941, at the age of eighteen, he joined the Royal Navy; two and a half years spent aboard a cruiser were to give him the background for HMS Ulysses, his first novel, the outstanding documentary novel on the war at sea. After the war he gained an English Honour ...more
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“A terrified rat will swear to anything.” 1 likes
“We, ironically known as the civilizados - in practically everything that matters they're a damned sight more civilized than we are - bring them so-called progress, which harms them, so-called change, which harms them, so-called civilization, which harms them even more, and desease, which kills them.” 0 likes
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