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Cities of Gold

Cities of Gold [Kindle Edition]

Douglas Preston
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)

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Product Description

Product Description

This new ebook edition of Cities of Gold includes for very first time over 100 never-before-published photographs taken during the author’s epic, thousand mile horseback journey across Arizona and New Mexico. It also includes many rare and extraordinary historical photographs of the Old West, Native Americans, pioneers, prospectors, Indian pueblos, and vanished landscapes.

“The Old West’s last glimmers flicker through this piercingly beautiful adventure, an unforgettable saga in which Preston, astride his horse Popeye, traverses the desert and mountain wilderness of Arizona and New Mexico retracing the trail-blazing 1540-41 expedition of Spanish Explorer Francisco Vasquez de Coronado in search of the legendary Seven Cities of Gold … In place of the mythical winning of the West, Preston unfolds a harrowing tale of loss.” – Publishers Weekly

“The entire book is a sheer pleasure to read.” – The San Diego Union-Tribune

“A Blue Highways on horseback, well worth the trip.” – Kirkus Reviews

“A riveting yarn, with as many turns as a switchback road.” – The Christian Science Monitor

“A fearful, fascinating tale.” – Los Angeles Times

“A journey of historical importance.” – The New York Times

“By setting out with a companion and four horses to track Coronado’s army across a thousand miles of brutal desert and mountain country, from the Mexican border through Arizona and New Mexico, the author is ready to risk his life to try to see with his own eyes, as it were, ‘that moment, 450 years ago, when the peoples of the Old World and New World first encountered each other’ and quickly began the strife-torn redefining of America. Throughout the book, Preston intersperses the original reports and memoirs of Coronado’s adventure with accounts of his own party’s hard progress, making the centuries dissolve into a common, first-person, present-tense narrative. And along the way he records stories of the people and places he encounters, making brief excursions into mining booms and busts, the history of livestock ranching, the impact of barbed wire and windmills, the first mail routes, homesteading, the destruction of the Indian nations, and much more.” – Smithsonian Magazine

Douglas Preston is a journalist and author who has published twenty-six books, nonfiction and fiction, several of which have been #1 New York Times bestsellers. In addition to Cities of Gold he is the author of several books on Southwestern history, including Talking to the Ground and The Royal Road. Preston is the co-creator, with Lincoln Child, of the Pendergast series of novels, including Relic and The Cabinet of Curiosities—both of which were named in a National Public Radio listener poll as being among the 100 greatest suspense novels ever written. Preston’s most recent nonfiction book, The Monster of Florence, is being made into a movie starring George Clooney. Preston also writes for the New Yorker magazine, the Atlantic and Smithsonian, and he taught nonfiction writing at Princeton University. He divides his time between Maine and New Mexico.

Walter W. Nelson began his creative career in 1967 and it has spanned a period of 40 years. He first explored the field of photography, traveling around the world, discovering spiritual places, deep landscapes, places of origin, experimenting with abstract colors and textures, always seeking the visual heart of existence in the desert, mountains, canyons, rivers, and cities of the world. He later branched out to painting and sculpture, and combined all three into an ever-expanding visu

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 41033 KB
  • Print Length: 480 pages
  • Publisher: William Morris Endeavor Entertainment (4 Mar 2014)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00IEIH792
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #311,500 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

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4.7 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Fascinating story of an Amazing Adventure 27 Dec 2004
I have not read any of Doug Preston's fiction, but his travels in the American South West are riveting. If you have an interest in Spanish-American History, the tribes past and present of the South West USA or just of adventuring out there, then this is a book you cannot fail to enjoy.
Eschewing the usual routes and modes of transportation Preston and his companions ride on horseback across some of the least populated and bleakest, yet most beautiful landscapes in America - the deserts of Southern Arizona and New Mexico and the resulting story is riveting. A blend of history, fact, travelogue and adventure it left me amazed at his accomplishment and touched by his enthusiasm for his subjects.
If you enjoy this book try reading his later journey across the Navajo Nation in Northern Arizona - Talking To the Ground. I've ridden parts of that trip on horseback with local people who know the trails and it is HARD! So I know first hand that Doug Preston can be relied upon to "tell it like it is".
Most people won't ever get, or want, to ride out to places where water is skimmed out of a tank covered in green slime, but this book takes you there without the discomfort. Just keep a cool drink handy when reading it!
Highly recommended for anyone interested in a good read.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
I found the mix of history and interviews with current residents quite rivoting. Traveling the southwest after reading this book made the trip particularly exciting.
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5.0 out of 5 stars 24 carat gold 8 May 2011
Doug Preston needs no introduction as a writer - this book is the bench-mark in 'horse travel' writing from some-one with a deep love, knowledge and respect for the subject matter.

Imagine Indiana Jones pursuing a legend of gold... Doug, along wth the exceptionallly talented photographer Walter Nelson, this is a gritty warts and all documentary what it was like to ride unsupported, through America' toughest landscape in Arizona and New Mexico. Description and detail are first-class. Doug takes you there, spares nothing. Was a great help for me preparing for technical difficulties of mounting an expedition, by discussing the land, how horses fare, brutal conditions and a sharp reminder 'riding into the sunset' is a short-term feel-good factor.

Exceptional, a must-have read for anyone interested in the desert-southwest, Indian culture and those planning a horse trek of serious proportions.

Simon Casson, author: "Riding The Outlaw Trail in the Footsteps of Butch Cassidy & The Sundance Kid"
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.7 out of 5 stars  73 reviews
27 of 28 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Pure Gold 6 Dec 2000
By Connie Copenhaver - Published on
Reading a book twice is a rarity for me. But this book was worth both the investment (I bought one for myself, one for a friend) and the time. Having lived in and explored most of Arizona through backpacking, hiking, and horse trekking, I found Douglas Preston's recounting of his adventure to be both a delight and a thoughtful read.
Anyone who has experienced the difficulties and beauty of nature first hand, will benefit from this book. All horse lovers will find themselves and their fleet-footed friends well depicted in Preston's travails. And those who simply want to learn more about the Southwest, its original inhabitants, the Spanish conquest and the impact of civilization on this fragile landscape and doomed people will want to explore Preston's sensitive, well-documented exposition. His final observations on our future are prescient and a warning: we, too, may go the way of the Zuni, Navajo, conquistadores and ranchers.
21 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This book is a TREASURE! 2 Nov 1999
By Geoff, 4-corners-aphile, in Seattle ( - Published on
This book is SO much more than a travel log. The journey that the author and a friend took through the desert on horseback, by all rights, should have produced on dead author and one dead friend, but, instead, produced and extremely rich book. Its not often that an author can bring to bear such a breadth of knowledge and skill: historical knowledge, great research, wise understanding of political/ecological issues, thoughtful good judgment in observing cultures, gutsy explorer-courage, and great writing skills - each like extra icing within a tasty adventure-story layer cake.
The book is high quality information gathered in one spot covering so many areas: Navajo, Hopi, Zuni, Pueblo, and Apache history; early Spanish/Mexican culture; the Spanish/Mexican invasion under Coronado; Anglo history in the southwest; southwest ecology, geography, climate, flora, fauna, and horse psychology 101. Best of all, the words are written by a person of heart who feels and shares the magic of meeting people of other cultures, both present day and ancestral (via those tantalizing archeological sites, through native oral tradition, and from the European perspective). I've read my old hard copy edition of this book twice, and loan it out often - whenever I spot someone showing early signs of becoming fascinated with the Southwest.
17 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Cities of Gold: A journey Across the American Southwest 9 Jan 2000
By "grannyanndi" - Published on
This is one of the most well written, expansive stories about the settling of America I have ever read. It takes you back to the time of Cortez and before, but the author's adventures are current and often funny. It is filled with courage; of the writer, the various Pueblo Indian tribes, the Spanish and some Americans. The Zuni philosophy and understanding of the competative needs of the white man are truely enlightening. This is a book I will read again and again. Preston's books about the southwest are both educational and exciting. Sometimes you can hear the wind and taste the dust.
9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The book is the true gold of the Seven Cities of Cibola! 18 Aug 2000
By A Customer - Published on
What a wonderful read! From the first page I was gripped with not only the snippets of history of the region, but also the adventure of the author and his companions, riding horseback from Arizona's Mexican border to Santa Fe, retracing Coronado's sesarch for the Seven Cities of Cibola.
The tale is a wonderful one, as the author rides through present day Arizona and finds that the Old West is not dead after all. At considerable risk to life and limb, the adventurers ride the trail which they, and scholars, believe was Coronado's own, and in doing so meet ranchers and cowboys who relate their own histories and adventures in this wild but exciting land.
An incredible travel tale, and a must-read for those who enjoy history mixed with a good adventure.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Should be required reading in Arizona! 28 Sep 2007
By J. C. Barrow - Published on
This is a book that keeps your attention.. a present-day journey of the unexpected...just as Coronado's excursion was only 5 centuries ago. I learned more about Arizona's early early history (even before it was Arizona) and more recent history than I ever knew. I believe students here in Arizona should be required to read it! Not necessarily as the bible of truth, but it would go a loooong way towards putting their own homeland in perspective.

I give my dog-eared copy to friends and acquaintances from "back East"...they read it before they visit, and immediately have a context for their visit and what they see here.

I sometimes watch the sunset over the Sierra Madres from a quiet peak near the border that is part of the Coronado National Monument. It's impossible to see any signs of civilization there in the southern panorama...easier to imagine Coronado's entry ...with the help of this book.
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