State of Wonder by Ann Patchett

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State of Wonder takes us deep into the Amazon as we follow Dr. Marina Singh. She is sent there by a Minnesota pharmaceutical company to find her former mentor, Dr. Swenson, who is supposed to be working on an important new drug. The research is costing the company an insane amount of money and Dr. Swenson has stopped responding to any communication requesting updates on her progress.

The assignment is difficult because no one knows exactly where she is and the last person who was sent to find her is now dead. Also, the jungle is completely new territory for Dr. Singh--there are insects everywhere and snakes and while she finds it lush and beautiful, it is not very welcoming. Once she finds Dr. Swenson a whole new adventure begins as she tries to discover what the research is about and whether or not development on a new drug is actually happening. The sacrifices she makes test her in ways she had not previously imagined possible, but they lead to her discovering answers about the state of her company's future as well as her own past.

Armchair travelers, fans of her previous bestseller Bel Canto, or Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad will especially enjoy this novel. Patchett's prose describes the landscape so that you feel you're with the characters nearly suffocating in the dense humid air of the Amazon.

Ann Patchett will be at Boswell Books on June 22, 2011 at 7 p.m. The event is co-sponsored by Wisconsin Public Radio.

Submitted by Jacki @ MPL Central

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This page contains a single entry by Jacki published on June 9, 2011 8:52 AM.

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