The River of Doubt: Theodore Roosevelt's Darkest Journey

Version: Abridged
Author: Candice Millard
Narrator: Richard Ferrone
Genres: History, Biography & Memoir, Politics, Law & Politics, Americas, Biography
Publisher: Random House Audio Assets
Published In: October 2005
# of Units: 5 CDs
Length: 5 hours
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At once an incredible adventure narrative and a penetrating biographical portrait, "The River of Doubt is the true story of Theodore Roosevelt's harrowing exploration of one of the most dangerous rivers on earth.
The River of Doubt--it is a black, uncharted tributary of the Amazon that snakes through one of the most treacherous jungles in the world. Indians armed with poison-tipped arrows haunt its shadows; piranhas glide through its waters; boulder-strewn rapids turn the river into a roiling cauldron.
After his humiliating election defeat in 1912, Roosevelt set his sights on the most punishing physical challenge he could find, the first descent of an unmapped, rapids-choked tributary of the Amazon. Together with his son Kermit and Brazil's most famous explorer, Candido Mariano da Silva Rondon, Roosevelt accomplished a feat so great that many at the time refused to believe it. In the process, he changed the map of the western hemisphere forever.
Along the way, Roosevelt and his men faced an unbelievable series of hardships, losing their canoes and supplies to punishing whitewater rapids, and enduring starvation, Indian attack, disease, drowning, and a murder within their own ranks. Three men died, and Roosevelt was brought to the brink of suicide. "The River of Doubt brings alive these extraordinary events in a powerful nonfiction narrative thriller that happens to feature one of the most famous Americans who ever lived.
From the soaring beauty of the Amazon rain forest to the darkest night of Theodore Roosevelt's life, here is Candice Millard's dazzling debut.

Reviews (11)

Team of Rivals

Written by Anonymous on March 3rd, 2011

  • Book Rating: 4/5

Good book. Interesting perspective.

River of Doubt

Written by Anonymous from Highlands Ranch, CO on August 5th, 2010

  • Book Rating: 4/5

This was a good book to truly understand the magnificent man that Theodore Roosevelt was. Still not sure how he survived the trip. It's a sure thing that our current president Hussein Obama isn't made of the "real stuff" that Teddy was made of. Can't even picture him in a canoe that he had to carve himself.

Teddy Bear

Written by Joe on October 9th, 2009

  • Book Rating: 5/5

Great book, an excellent account of the hardships of exploring. In addition it was interesting to hear about the remote areas of the amazon jungle. If you don't enjoy this story there is something wrong with you.

The River of Doubt

Written by Anonymous on July 22nd, 2008

  • Book Rating: 5/5

Written from the journals of several men -- and thus, not a one-sided reflection of the expedition. Locations indicated in the book are described well, and listed in current atlas-- thus giving more insight into the true wilderness and the vastness of this previously unexplored area. Historically polite, with a mild protective coating of what I can only imagine may have been the real thoughts of the expedition journalists. Small details leading the reader into the intimate personalities of the characters allow for a most powerful view of what must have been an overwhelming adventure.

River of Doubt

Written by Tom Watrous on January 5th, 2008

  • Book Rating: 4/5

Very fascinating story. It's hard to believe that any one would attempt such a journey, let alone a former president of the United States. Fast paced with a good narrator.


Written by Jane Harper on December 13th, 2007

  • Book Rating: 5/5

Honestly, this is one of the most unbelievable stories I've ever listened to. I had to remind myself that Roosevelt CHOSE to go on this adventure. The hardships they faced day in and day out were mindboggling. Just when they would conquer one problem, they would turn the corner and there would be five more. I was blown away at the way one decision could test the fate of so many of the men who went on this trip. Page after page of unbelievable events. Extremely interesting.

River of Doubt

Written by James Dowd on November 17th, 2007

  • Book Rating: 5/5

Excellent presentation, fast moving and without a doubt one of the most amazing adventure trips ever. I had limited knowledge of Roosevelt's adventure spirit, but find him to be one of a kind.


Written by Beth Hronek on July 31st, 2007

  • Book Rating: 5/5

This was a well written and well read book. I found it interesting from start to finish. It would have been good to have a map handy, and I'd like to see some pictures of the areas they traveled through, but the author's descriptions were very vivid.

river doubt

Written by Lee Werley from Chapel Hill, NC on June 19th, 2007

  • Book Rating: 3/5

This was a nice story about T. Roosevelt's river adventure. I can not see our current president trying this. What a man. It was enjoyable and interesting. The descriptions of the region helped me visualize the area.

Teddy and the River

Written by DJG on May 12th, 2007

  • Book Rating: 4/5

I found this to be a very interesting book, thought not as informative as some that I have listen to.

Author Details

Author Details

Millard, Candice

CANDICE MILLARD is a former writer and editor at "National Geographic" magazine. She lives in Kansas City.