BOOK REVIEW: Five Weeks In The Amazon – by Sean Michael Hayes

brfiveweeksintheamazon

Title: Five Weeks In The Amazon
Author: Sean Michael Hayes
Genre: Non Fiction, Travel
First published: December 2nd 2014
Finished reading: September 2nd 2015
Pages: 270
Rating 2,5qqq

“Saying the jungle is amazing is like saying the Sistine Chapel is a masterpiece. In reality, they are both much more than words can describe, and the true essence of both can only be found through experiencing them.”

myrambles1review

Since the departure date of our backpacking adventure is coming closer (next Saturday!), I have been trying to read more travel themed books to really get in the travel mood. I found Five Weeks In The Amazon particularly interesting because I’ve been in Peru twice myself, although I’ve never actually visited the Amazon… It’s easy to say I really enjoyed the setting and it was nice to learn more about the Ayahuasca ritual and Sean Michael Hayes‘ experiences with the drug. It was a fast read as well, although I did have some problems with it. The most important one is the Spanish used in Five Weeks In The Amazon; it’s a real eyesore to a philologist like myself. I can understand crappy Spanish as long as he is trying to portray his own lack of knowledge of the language, but the locals speaking this way? I would actually have prefered reading the English translation of those dialogues. I couldn’t completely agree with his way of life either, but I guess that is something personal… That said, it is still quite an interesting and entertaining read if you want to learn more about the Ayahuasca ritual.

shortsummary1review

Five Weeks In The Amazon tells the true story of the author’s adventures in the Amazon jungle. He travels to Peru to try and find the answers on some of his questions about life with the help of the Ayahuasca ritual. He spends various weeks going back and forth between Iquitos and the jungle to experience several Ayahuasca rituals. A local shaman is helping him with his journey and healing process, and we read more about how the drug is affecting both his body and those of the other people who participate.

finalthoughtsreview

This non fiction story is without doubt an interesting read and is more about emotional than physical travel. If you want to learn more about the Ayahuasca ritual, Five Weeks In The Amazon is probably a good choice if you are not too focused on the spiritual journey. I did have some problems with the story and it wasn’t one of my favorite reads this year, but I’m still glad I’ve read it. I’m not sure I would want to have my own experience with Ayahuasca, but I definitely respect those who have been brave enough to try it.

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11 thoughts on “BOOK REVIEW: Five Weeks In The Amazon – by Sean Michael Hayes

    • I guess living in Latin America does have its advantages. 😉 Peru is such a great country to visit; Machu Picchu being an unforgettable experience. I would love to visit the Amazon though!

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  5. Hey I just wanted to say thanks for the review. I can understand some of your criticisms, since it is my first book there is tons I am critical of myself!
    I am working hard on my second book, and also editing the audiobook for Five Weeks in the Amazon… I’ll stay in touch, keep up the great work.
    Thanks again,
    Sean

    Liked by 1 person

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