Book Review: Nonfiction from monkey gods to rock ‘n’ roll gods |

Book Review: Nonfiction from monkey gods to rock ‘n’ roll gods

‘Lost City of the Monkey God’

by Douglas Preston

“Lost City of the Monkey God” chronicles the search for Cuidad Blanca, the White City, throughout the modern history of Honduras. What begins as a treasure hunt in the 1800’s, turns into an archaeological study of an unknown civilization found dead in the eastern jungle of Honduras, known as La Mosquitia, or the Gates of Hell.

What follows is an epic excavation that must pay heed to a brutal jungle, a mercurial government, professional academic critique and a ravaging illness that reminds the entire exploratory party that adventure doesn’t end just because you’ve left the jungle.

A beautiful archaeological review, that pays homage to the lovely yet deadly Honduran jungle. I loved that it acknowledged that early European contact with New World natives was devastating, and colonialist attitudes still harm the area, but every precaution was taken to include Honduras in this excavation.


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‘Motorcycles I’ve Loved’

by Lily Brooks-Dalton

This memoir follows Lily Brooks-Dalton in her early twenties, after a devastating break-up and a trans-global move, dealing with the aimlessness and search for direction that so often accompanies those years. Where some people pick up pottery, an instrument, or crossfit to deal with the proverbial emptiness, Brooks-Dalton picked something a bit more midlife crisis than mid-20s — motorcycles.

Her debut novel follows her from the purchase of her first Honda Rebel through a Honda Silverwing, and eventually to a Triumph Bonneville, each of which teaches her a bit more about herself. It’s been said that people get happier once they get on a bike, but I think this novel is proof that bikes attract a certain type of person. Strong, even at their weakest points.




by Keith Richards

It’s said that every time someone smokes a cigarette, God takes an hour from their life and gives it to Keith Richards. A look at the life of one of rock ‘n’ roll’s patron saints through his won eyes.

How else do you describe Keith Richards?

Read this memoir, and you may find yourself closer than you wanted to be to one of the most notable guitarists in history. If you’ve ever listened to the Rolling Stones, or wondered what it’s like to be a rockstar, this should clear a few things up for you.


Jenna Meier-Bilbo is a bookseller at Off The Beaten Path.