The Road to Samarcand

Front Cover
W. W. Norton & Company, 2007 - Fiction - 269 pages
13 Reviews
This story begins where Patrick O'Brian's devoted fans would want it to, with a sloop in the South China Sea barely surviving a killer typhoon. But the time is the 1930s, and the protagonist a teenaged American boy whose missionary parents have just died. In the company of his rough seafaring uncle and an elderly English cousin, an eminent archaeologist, Derrick sets off in search of ancient treasures in central Asia.

Along the way they encounter a charismatic Chinese bandit and a host of bad characters, including Russian agents fomenting unrest. (Most of these meet very bad ends.) The narrative—as in all of O'Brian's novels—touches on surprising subjects: astronomy, oriental philosophy, the correct identification of ancient Han bronzes, and some very local cuisine. It ends in an ice-bound valley, with the party caught between hostile Red-Hat monks and the Great Silent Ones, which is how the Tibetans designate the yeti.
  

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Review: The Road to Samarcand

User Review  - Rachel - Goodreads

This is a rousing good adventure story in the tradition of 19th century boys' serials. The novel is based on short stories featuring the same characters, published in the Oxford Annual for Boys ... Read full review

Review: The Road to Samarcand

User Review  - Sarah - Goodreads

Not the most engaging but it has its funny parts. It definitely feels dated. I liked imagining myself a young boy back in the forties reading this adventure and dreaming of traveling the world. But it ... Read full review

Selected pages

Contents

Section 1
7
Section 2
31
Section 3
43
Section 4
64
Section 5
74
Section 6
85
Section 7
104
Section 8
121
Section 9
140
Section 10
161
Section 11
180
Section 12
203
Section 13
226
Section 14
246
Section 15
273
Copyright

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About the author (2007)

Patrick O'Brian is the author of twenty volumes in the highly respected Aubrey/Maturin series of novels.

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