Between the Orinoco and the Amazon
By Richard Starks & Miriam Murcutt
The Casiquiare is unique. There is no other river like it on the planet. Somehow it manages to unite the two river systems of the Orinoco and the Amazon that should, by rights, be entirely separate, and the Casiquiare performs the astonishing feat of flowing up and over the watershed that divides them.
Richard Starks and Miriam Murcutt travelled along the Casiquiare at the behest of the Royal Geographical Society - and in the footsteps of exploring greats like Alexander von Humboldt and Aimé Bonpland - to gather information about the river and the fierce Yanomani tribe that still maintains its austere and primitive lifestyle in the region.
Richard Starks is a journalist, author and traveller. He worked as a journalist for the Financial Post in Canada and has written for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation.
Miriam Murcutt is a writer and editor. She has worked on magazines in London and Canada.
Number 1 in Amazon's Best Seller list for books on Venezuela
Review from the Midwest Book Review:
'Along the River that Flows Uphill: From the Orinoco to the Amazon is a travelogue of a journey along the Casiquiare river, unique among rivers in that it joins two separate river systems - the Oroinco and the Amazon - seemingly by flowing up and over the watershed that separates them. Former journalist Richard Starks and travel writer and editor Miriam Murcutt relate their adventure along the mysterious Casiquiare in vivid detail, including a brush with a tribe of Yanomami Indians and a potentially dangerous confrontation with FARC guerillas. Their reflections of the sights, wonders, and wistful beauties of a little-traveled path make for an unforgettably vivid travelogue. Along the River that Flows Uphill is a treat highly recommended especially for armchair travelers.'
Review from Melissa Koltes, Rebeccasreads.com:
''Along the River that Flows Uphill' is not just a story but a real life adventure that takes twists and turns along a remarkable stretch of water that remains nearly untouched. The authors not only give a stunning account of their adventures but provide intriguing background information as they go through the journey. From slight sidebars to detailed accounts of jungle, river and bugs, the reader feels as though she joined the authors on the trip... This is an extremely intelligent book that leaves the reader feeling wiser for having read it and more aware of the fragility of the world, as well as a bit of disgust at the corruption that plagues the political arenas.'
'A very well written book that has a few surpirses along the way.'
Interview with Miriam and Richard on Travel Talk Radio:
Scroll down to Segment 5 on the link to listen.
Review from the January Magazine, Thursday 31st December 2009
“I’ve nearly died three times in my life -- which is funny in an ironic way, since I was once accused of never taking any risks.” This first line of Along the River that Flows Uphill sets the tone completely. We understand, just from that, that we’re about to embark on an adventure. The other thing that we understand is that we’re in the hands of a storyteller or, as it turns out, a couple of them. In 2005, the authors were commissioned to write an article for Geographical, the magazine of the London-based Royal Geographical Society. Their assignment was to travel the length of the Casiquiare River in Venezuela, the river that joins the Amazon and the Orinoco by apparently flowing uphill. One can see, however, where the material the pair were assembling might have overflowed from the article they’d been assigned. The book the two produced is both enjoyable and informative: and so much beyond the travelogue one might expect. It is creative non-fiction. It is literature. It is history. It is geography. It is adventure. And it is cracking good fun. -- Aaron Blanton
A brilliant review from The List, 30 April 2010
And a nice piece in South American Explorer Magazine, April 2010
An interview with Rick Steves :