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Here is the story of a 1622 Spanish shipwrecked soldier's fantastic survival trek through coastal and inland Florida. Physical and emotional challenges of the highest order confront him on a four-year COLD MOUNTAIN-south adventure through a world few Europeans had seen. The will to live and his instinctive outdoor traits prod him into action, pursuing the return to his homeland. Written in the spirit of Daniel Defoe's ROBINSON CRUSOE, a Spanish lieutenant survives the sinking of the famed silver-laden galleon Atocha in the Florida Keys. Becoming self-reliant in a foreign wilderness, he strives to return home, honor intact, aided by a sharp Toledo sword.
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Motivated by his family's military heritage and his reading of Don Quixote, our protagonist is spurred on to pursue a trip to the New World aboard a military galleon in 1622. Though his heart is wrenched to leave his bethrothed, one can feel the excitement that eventually builds as he sets sail. Albeit, serving the king honorably is soon forgotten as his silver-laden ship sinks in a hurricane on the return.
Cast ashore and made to endure Indian slavery humbles him, and he inwardly becomes obsessed with escape. It comes, but with a price, paid by the death and torment of fellow escapees. Given a few pieces of eight, or pesos, on the ship, he carefully guards them on his trek, until he begins to resent both the monarchy and the coins for his plight. This consternation sets him on a dangerous mission that almost takes his life.
His suffers further grief, both in a village and in St. Augustine's jail, but with dignity and honor, he is persistent in returning to Spain. His trials are many, both physical and emotional, but in the end is triumph.
It's 1622 in the Golden Age of Spain and silver from Peru is the king's lifeblood to fight European religious wars. Young Alferez (Lieutenant) Luis Armador is assigned to the military that guards the annual silver fleet to and from the Indies. Bidding goodby to his bethrothed, Isabella, in Spain, he plans to return in six months for their wedding. It turns into a four-year trek, as his returning treasure-laden galleon, the Atocha, wrecks off the Florida Keys in the hurricane of September 6, 1622. 260 go to a watery grave, but not before Luis is washed overboard and comes ashore in colonial Florida amongst the fierce Calusa Indians.
Wilderness challenges of storms, captivity, subsistence, animal attacks, swordfights, an underground river, the farflung St. Augustine outppost, and the Barbary pirates off Spain's coast all confront him.
Dugout canoeing is one of his major means of travel on the coast, as well as on Florida's Withlacoochee, Suwannee, and Alapaha Rivers. He is aided by the Portuguese ex-slaver Pedro Martins, the Congolease mulatto Lunga, the half-breed Tocobaga Indian Owahee, the Arapaja Indian Chukka, wilderness friars, and the fighting Christian Knight, Groz Guotman. Armador is plotted against by a mad mission priest and falsely imprisoned and unwillfully conscripted by Florida Governor Royas y Borgia. Through sheer determination and natural instincts he is dauntless in his quest to return home.
The image of Isabella both haunts and inspires him.
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Book Description AuthorHouse, 2012. Hardcover. Condition: New. Never used!. Seller Inventory # P111468587331
Book Description AuthorHouse, 2012. Condition: New. book. Seller Inventory # M1468587331