The Pequod Review:
Peter Fleming (1907-1971) was less famous than his brother Ian, but he was a far better writer as he proved through a series of witty and humorous travel adventures. The best of these is Brazilian Adventure, a diary of his poorly-planned, last-minute trip to central Brazil in search of the lost Colonel Percy Fawcett. Fleming rejected the reverence and stuffiness of contemporary travelogues for an engaging and exuberant attitude. Here for example he describes the man-eating piranhas he frequently encountered along the Tapirape River:
We could not but admire the rigid self-control with which they ruled their blood-lust. We noted the ascetic, indeed the almost apprehensive glances which they cast at our tempting calves. Sometimes, if we stood still, a small shoal, a kind of deputation, would approach and hang diffidently suspended in the translucent water, staring at our legs with a wistful, perhaps a slightly covetous awe: as shop-girls stare at the sentries outside Buckingham Palace.
This book is such great fun. Highly recommended.