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  1. Valverde's Gold: In Search of the Last Great Inca Treasure
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  2. Valverde's Gold: In Search of the Last Great Inca Treasure

    Delivery: 10-20 Working Days
    Customer Ratings (10 reviews)
    Price R389.00

Additional Information

In 1887, two British sailors landed on the coast of Ecuador and set off across the Andes on a secret mission. Their task was to locate an immense hoard of Inca gold which had been lost for hundreds of years. A botanist who had recently returned from Ecuador had provided them with documents proving it still existed and gave them the route to find it. And find it they did - but both perished before they could make their way back to the cave a second time.

In Valverde's Gold, Mark Honigsbaum attempts to unravel a riddle that has inspired frustrating and fatal treasure hunts for centuries. When he delves into the botanist's life and discovers an ancient Spanish treasure guide buried in his notebook, he cannot help but be drawn into the mystery. Undeterred by the cursed history of the gold, Honigsbaum embarks on an epic journey into the last uncharted range in the Andes-the Llanganati Mountains of eastern Ecuador. This is the story of how the lure of gold intoxicates even the most level-headed of historians, and of how men-and women-are seized with the desire to claim treasure from one of the most inhospitable landscapes in the world. Honigsbaum battles through mountains, jungles, and conflicting stories, and, as he draws closer to the hidden cache, illuminates the allure of lost gold and the hold it has on our imagination.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

I must agree with another reviewer... all that is required of this book is the first and last chapters.
Instead of high-level adventure or life threatening exploits into the mysterious, the reader is best to settle for historical research of past attempts to locate Ecuador's legendary Inca treasure. No Indiana Jones script here.

With such an entanglement of characters past and present, along with weak geographical perceptibility due to a map which is certainly difficult to interpret, the discourse turns into muddle.

The subject at hand is simply overdone to the point of exhaustion.
This book is pretty disappointing. Whilst treasure hunts are inherently interesting (and this one is the biggest of them all), following Honigsbaum is more often than not utterly boring. In each chapter his quest for the lost Incan treasure diverges into a new dead-end avenue, and his research is so hodge-podge that it is difficult to follow.

Much of his prose is boring and ought to have been cut short. For instance, he spends a chapter detailing his study of old Spanish documents in Seville, despite the fact that he finds absolutely nothing of import. Historical research is not exactly something one needs to read about in detail. His prose reads something like, "And suddenly, I put a new search term in the computer! I waited, as the hourglass turned on screen for what seemed an eternity. Then, just as I thought I was about to find the key document, my search came back! 'No Documents Found,' it said." He might then look over an unrelated document, and spend a page... Read more
First and foremost, this book is more of a literary and investigative adventure. It's not until the last chapter that the author actually details his own physical search for the fabled treasure in Ecuador of the Incan King Atahualpa. A treasure that by all accounts over the last 500 years may be the most valuable land cache of gold and other precious objects on earth. It provides interesting and entertaining background on the other treasure hunters and explorers who went before him on the search. This leads the reader through labrynthine twists of misinformation, questionable documents/maps and several "characters" the author encounters who come across as gold-crazed swashbucklers. The book is definitely well-researched, but I expected something more along the lines of an Indiana Jones type of real-life adventure and came away with something more along the lines of a day spent in a musty-smelling library....
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