An intriguing title and a compelling personal account of expat life in Brazil in the 1960's, this is an interesting and thought-provoking read. Paul Williams has a knack for engaging the reader with his witty and insightful prose. His clever, detailed cinematographic style has the effect of drawing the reader into the action - a literary editorial trick in the style of Guy Ritchie. Read the opening paragraph and you'll see what I mean.
Not only are the insights into the British and Brazilian banking world as a trainee in the 60's interesting, they are highly amusing too and Williams describes the characters involved with great skill. His adventures in Brazil are at once fascinating and terrifying as he becomes unwittingly involved in a murder and flees the country.
The second half of the book has a rather different feel as he returns to Brazil, penniless, as a research student with a typewriter, recording equipment and an open and enquiring mind. His research takes him to Itaparica, the Island of the Dead and deep into the Amazon rainforest where he meets witch doctors and spiritual healers, gaining trust, friends and information thanks to his linguistic skills and becoming in the process one of the pioneers of Amazonian anthropology.
Well worth reading, this book is a real page-turner, which will give you valuable insights into the `dark side' of Brazil and make you question conventional medicine as we know it.