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A Guest in the Jungle [Kindle Edition]

James Polster
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)

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Product Description

Product Description

When Pittsburgh attorney Whitehill begins his vacation, he is anticipating a leisurely jaunt across South America. But he gets more than he bargained for when a sightseeing trip goes awry, leaving him stranded in the heart of the Amazon jungle. Whitehill isn’t exactly the outdoorsy type—he hikes in Brooks Brothers pants—so he is relieved when he meets a scientist perusing the jungle for medicinal plants and insects. Of course, the good doctor’s true motives are less than altruistic, and Whitehill soon finds himself being forcibly marched through the rainforest en route to certain death. When he escapes, with the help of some hungry vampire bats, Whitehill falls in with an English-speaking Indian whose tribe is at the heart of a raging land conflict. Trapped in the jungle, Whitehill must gather what little courage he has to stop an Indian war and preserve a vanishing culture from rapacious developers. Along the way, he has a fling with a gorgeous native, narrowly survives being sacrificed to the gods, and is rescued from a bombing by a pair of hard-drinking American expats. A Guest in the Jungle is a smart, engrossing, and uproariously funny novel about the power of one man to make a difference in the world.

About the Author

James Polster hails from Cleveland, Ohio and has worked as novelist, movie producer, screenwriter, explorer and journalist. After graduation from Tulane University in 1969, Polster hopped a freighter for Spain and eventually settled in Tangiers. He returned to the United States to attend graduate school at Columbia and Harvard. Beginning in 1973, Polster explored the Amazon Rainforest on several trips, spent time in the jungles of Irian Jaya with cannibals in 1989, and both covered and played in the World Championships of Elephant polo for Sports Illustrated in Nepal in 1991. Polster is a National Fellow of the Explorers Club. He currently lives in Los Angeles with his son Nick.

Product Details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 395 KB
  • Print Length: 251 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1935597515
  • Publisher: Lake Union Publishing (April 19 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0047O2S6Y
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Not Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #131,446 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)

Customer Reviews

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Most helpful customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars loved it! Oct. 9 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
K. Robson

Very clever, funny, and pointing out the real situation in the Amazon, as well as a rollicking tale One of my favourite lines: The Indians couldn't understand why the white man wanted to cut down the forest when it was so much more useful the way it was. (Not quite accurately quoted!)
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4.0 out of 5 stars Great travel/adventure/mystery story! April 30 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I got this book randomly because it was a suggestion and I'm glad I did. I could not put it down and finished it in less than a week. Well-written with a good story that leaves enough mystery to keep it interesting.
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4.0 out of 5 stars good read but may be a little far fetched Jan. 31 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
gives you a little idea of what business may be doing in remote areas
not a big lot of action
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 3.4 out of 5 stars  72 reviews
20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars I Kept Imagining This As A Movie! May 18 2011
By Mary - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Wacky & off-beat does not begin to describe this book! Also, as I read along, I kept thinking that I could easily imagine this as a movie ~ and perhaps that is also what the author was thinking as he wrote it because it just so happens that he works in the movie business! I did enjoy the book & found it very funny in places. Don't read this book expecting great writing (the writing is adequate, but won't win raves), but read it for the very inventive story of a buttoned-up white lawyer seeking a tame adventure in the Amazon jungle, but becomes lost, kidnapped by bad guys, rescued by an indigenous tribe, and has lots of exotic adventures.
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars TOPICAL AND HYSTERICAL May 12 2011
By David Gary Becker - Published on
Format:Kindle Edition
James Polster has one of the most unique comic visions of anyone writing today. Once you recover from laughing your guts out, this book will make you want to get up off the couch and either go save the Rainforet or go buy that other Polster surrealist gem, "Brown." "Guest in the Jungle" fictionalizes the author's own jaw-dropping adventures in the Amazon; you'll have to read them to believe them, and you should do it as soon as you can. Polster blends Joseph Heller, Joseph Conrad and Mark Twain into a unique jungle stew that will have you in stitches - and Polster himself would have been in stitches if that bushmaster had succeeded in sticking his fangs in him. Luckily he escaped, to entertain and enchant us all.
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fun and intrigue in the Amazon May 12 2011
By Moonlit Knight - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Whitehill is a thirty-something American lawyer who quits his job in search of adventure. Unprepared and reckless, we first meet him lost in the jungle outside a remote Amazonian town. Nobody knows his whereabouts and tragedy seems certain; that's when the fun starts. Whitehill meets the mysterious Dr. Darreiro and his scary Indian sidekick; they're obviously up to no good and it's non-stop jungle intrigue until we find out why.

As the hapless lawyer goes ever deeper into unexplored territory the inhabitants get stranger. When Whitehill shares magic-mushroom soup with a friendly tribe, things take a surreal turn. These Indians are not your everyday native stereotypes.

Who knows what is lurking deep in the green wilderness; one thing's for sure, the beauty of the Amazon rainforest shines center stage throughout the story.

16 of 20 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Not at all funny, and not interesting May 12 2011
By Christine Stamper - Published on
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
In A Guest in the Jungle, author James Polster introduces readers to Whitehill, a 31 year old lawyer from Pittsburg. He takes a sabbatical on a whim to travel the world without an itinerary. Forgetting his fear of snakes, he goes hiking in the Amazon jungle without a guide. Whitehall is then trust through a series of adventures involving kidnapping and isolated tribes.

Polster's writing is generally lush and descriptive, but sometimes these descriptions come off amateur-ish, such as "He closed his eyes and sighed like a man at his desk who realizes that the workload for the day is far more than he anticipated." Also, Amazon has this book categorized as "comic fiction," however, I did not find any part of this book to be funny, rather it was just exaggerated to the point of ridiculousness. In fact, one "funny" scene involved oral sex during a business meeting - it was not funny, but gratuitous and awkward.

In trying to beef up the story by making Whitehill and his adventures seem more important, Polster added small elements of mystery through a few sections that center around other characters. One of these is Travers, a no nonsense business man who fears change and is trying to work in Bogata. These segments are few and far between and seemingly unconnected (in fact, on character has literally no purpose by the time you reach the end of the novel), and only make the novel disjointed.

Some of the views of Western life are insightful, but overall it reads like Polster wanted to convince readers to save the rain forest and indigenous tribes by writing a "funny" story. While an admirable goal, it becomes preachy and boring. This, compacted with an abrupt and unsatisfying ending, makes it impossible for me to recommend this book to anyone.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I couldn't wait to get into bed at night and start reading again May 12 2011
By cpcooks - Published on
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This is story telling at it's best, a page turner. It's all the more incredible because it's based on the author's real life adventures! I can't believe someone would choose to go into a jungle full of huge snakes but this guy did. The descriptions are also lush. I couldn't wait to get into bed at night and start reading again. Loved it.
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