Tracking a Legend
Author Mark Adams hits the road
Tracing the steps of the man who may have been the inspiration for Indiana Jones leads to unexpected adventures.
Calling all Indiana Jones fans! Author Mark Adams has quite a tale to share in his book Turn Right at Machu Picchu. In it, he writes about traversing the Andes in what would be a once-in-a-lifetime experience in adventure archeology. In 1911 Yale lecturer and explorer Hiram Bingham III found Machu Picchu and, because of that, world fame. But controversy remains even now. Did he smuggle artifacts out of, and steal credit for, the find? Adams, with his background in editing adventure stories, rolled up his sleeves (OK, he corrects: “I didn’t really roll up my sleeves so much as fold them neatly”) to do first-hand research. That is, he retraced Bingham’s steps, and along the way discovered his own treasures, such as remarkable views and unusual characters.
Adams’s researching prowess and engaging humor earned him high praise from book critics. Sebastian Junger, author of The Perfect Storm and War, wrote of it: “It is a beautiful and profound world that he has entered, and his readers are immeasurably the richer for it.” Men’s Journal named one of the ten best nonfiction books of 2011.
Hear from the author on April 16, when he will be appearing at the Fairfield Public Library.