Synopses & Reviews
In 1945, twenty-four American servicemen and women boarded a plane to see “Shangri-La,” a beautiful valley deep within Dutch New Guinea. But when the plane crashed, only three pulled through to battle for survival.
Emotionally devastated and badly injured, the trio faced certain death. Caught between spear-carrying tribesmen and enemy Japanese, they trekked down the jungle-covered mountainside and straight into superstitious natives rumored to be cannibals.
Drawn from interviews, Army documents, photos, diaries, and original film footage, Lost in Shangri-La recounts this true-life adventure for the first time. Mitchell Zuckoff reveals how the trio traversed the jungle; how brave Filipino-American paratroopers risked their lives to save the survivors; how a native leader protected the Americans; and how a cowboy colonel attempted an untried rescue mission to get them out.
A riveting work of nonfiction that brings to life an odyssey at times terrifying, enlightening, and comic, Lost in Shangri-La is a thrill ride from beginning to end.
“A truly incredible adventure.” New York Times Book Review
“Zuckoff delivers a remarkable survival story. . . . In this well-crafted book, Zuckoff turns the long-forgotten episode into an unusually exciting narrative. . . . Polished, fast-paced and immensely readableready for the big screen.” Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
“Zuckoff transforms impressive research into a deft narrative that brings the saga of the survivors to life.” Publishers Weekly (starred review)
“[A] gripplingly cinematic account. . . . A remarkable cast of characters. . . . A.” Entertainment Weekly
“A riveting tale in the hands of a good storyteller. . . . LOST IN SHANGRI-LA is the most thrilling book, fiction or nonfiction, that I have read since I cant remember when.” Seattle Times
“This is an absorbing adventure right out of the Saturday-morning serials. . . . Lost in Shangri-La deserves a spot on the shelf of Greatest Generation nonfiction. It puts the reader smack into the jungle. ” Cleveland Plain Dealer
“Mitchell Zuckoff has uncovered, and vividly reconstructed, such an astonishing tale. . . . Zuckoff skillfully builds narrative tension and deft character portraits. . . . . He has pulled off a remarkable feat and held the reader firmly in the grip.” David Grann, Washington Post
“[An] engaging story. . . . This excellent book will be enjoyed by anyone who loves true adventure stories.” Library Journal (starred review)
“A lost world, man-eating tribesmen, lush andimpenetrable jungles, stranded American fliers (one of them a dame withgreat gams, for heaven's sake), a startling rescue mission. . . . This is atrue story made in heaven for a writer as talented as Mitchell Zuckoff. Whew—what an utterly compelling and deeplysatisfying read!" —Simon Winchester, author of Atlantic
Award-winning former Boston Globe reporter Mitchell Zuckoffunleashes the exhilarating, untold story of an extraordinary World War IIrescue mission, where a plane crash in the South Pacific plunged a trio of U.S.military personnel into a land that time forgot. Fans of Hampton Sides Ghost Soldiers, Marcus Luttrells Lone Survivor, and David Granns The Lost Cityof Z will be captivated by Zuckoffs masterfullyrecounted, all-true story of danger, daring, determination, and discovery injungle-clad New Guinea during the final days of WWII.
About the Author
Mitchell Zuckoff is the author of Lost in Shangri-La, a New York Times bestseller and winner of the Winship/PEN New England Award. His previous books include Robert Altman: The Oral Biography and Ponzis Scheme: The True Story of a Financial Legend. He has written for national and regional publications and is a former special projects reporter for the Boston Globe, where he was a Pulitzer Prize finalist for investigative reporting. He is a professor of journalism at Boston University and lives outside Boston.