Chris's Reviews > Lost in Shangri-la: A True Story of Survival, Adventure, and the Most Incredible Rescue Mission of World War II

Lost in Shangri-la by Mitchell Zuckoff
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Sep 02, 11

Read in August, 2011

Fascinating portrait of an era and the people who made it up. The end of WWII in the Pacific a bunch of bored people a horrible accident and the horrors that they went through. The first half of this book is pretty powerful with the intensity of the place crash and the attempts of the survivors to find shelter and food. An amazing look at a culture and a rich world that the world had never really seen.

The book was a great look at a society that really no longer exists as the modern world crashed into it and yet the tone of the book seemed to jump for me. The first half you really got into the survivors and their struggles the second half was an examination of the Papau New Guinea tribes and peoples. It was great to hear what the natives actually thought of the survivors and their rescuers it was at times hilarious to see what was really going through their minds as they dealt with these intruders into their world.

At the same time the tone of the book jumps a bit for me and since their was very little drama in the rescue once they got there, just a bunch of waiting around that the actual rescue which was totally insane almost comes off as ho hum. I don't know that it the fault of the writer as much as it was the fault of the reader (me) who to that point was losing interest in the whole thing. I would recommend, the book has some interesting tidbits and since one of the survivors was an unmarried woman you get some glimpse into the sexual politics of relationships in the 40's that are almost as interesting as the politics of the Natives.
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