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Publisher's Summary

"Dr. Livingstone, I presume?" So goes the signature introduction of New York Herald star journalist Henry Morton Stanley to renowned explorer Dr. David Livingstone, who had been missing for six years in the wilds of Africa. Into Africa ushers us into the meeting of these remarkable men. In 1866, when Livingstone journeyed into the heart of the African continent in search of the Nile's source, the land was rough, unknown to Europeans, and inhabited by man-eating tribes. The man sent to find him was an orphan and a drifter who had great ambition but little success to show for it. The book shows how, over the course of their nine-year relationship, Stanley ironically rose in power and prominence while Livingstone was relegated to isolation and danger in Africa.
©2003 Martin Dugard (P)2003 Books On Tape, Inc.

Critic Reviews

"It is rare when a historical narrative keeps readers up late into the night....But author and adventurer Dugard...makes a suspenseful tale out of journalist Stanley's successful trek through the African interior to find and rescue a stranded Livingstone....This is a well-researched, always engrossing book." (Publishers Weekly) "Dugard imbues the narrative with a keen sense of urgency that propels this compelling account along." (Booklist) "An action-packed recounting of one of the most famous incidents in the history of exploration. Fine entertainment for adventure buffs, solidly researched and fluently told." (Kirkus) "Crisp vivid language...transports the armchair adventurer from the jungle muck to the mountain peak." (Esquire)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings


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  • Overall
  • Gene
  • Agoura Hills, CA, USA
  • 04-01-04


I suppose that it is difficult or impossible to tell the story of Stanley and Livingston and the search for the source of the Nile without making a fascinating tale, and this long listen is no exception; it lives up to the promise of earlier works on the subject such as the Blue and White Nile books by, I think, Alan Moorhead. Stanley and Livingston are both fascinating characters; I didn't realize that Stanley had fought on both sides in the American Civil War, for example. I am normally quite hesitant to give any reading five stars, but it seems cruel to give short shrift to this well read and written tale.

31 of 31 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Outstanding Book and a Great Read (Listen)

This was the most fascinating telling of a piece of history that I have ever encounterd! Stanley and Livingston are NOT the persons you heard about in history. They were at once bigger and better as well as contrived and manipultive as any person could ever be! Yet there story, told here is more gripping and moving than any tale I've read with the possible exception of the book, "Shadow Divers" What these men were able to endure pales beyond my wildest imagination. Few persons today could endure or even be willing to endure what these men endured. This is a must read for nearly every man, women and child on the planet!

17 of 17 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Fascinating Tale

I have always had only a vague understanding of the famous Stanley and Livingstone encounter in Africa and of the even more famous "Dr. Livingstone, I presume" quotation. No longer. This book does a superb job of recounting the full tale, including the personalities and backgrounds of Stanley and Livingstone, the motivation of the American newspaper publisher who commissioned Stanley's search, and the reasons why Livingstone's fate had become a matter of intense public interest. All of this is explained as part of a neatly-constructed and engaging narrative. One point is abundantly clear from the book: Stanley would not have found Livingstone without a lot of luck and without the determination of both men to stay the course on their respective missions.

13 of 13 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

How to Read

John Lee is still the best narrator, even with his slightly silly Scottish and Southern (American) accents in this one. I guess I'm an idiot because I had never heard this full story before, but it's wonderful. The book presents a great amount of info into the lives of not only the two men and their traveling companions, but just about everyone who was tangentially related to the story. Four stars only because it drags a little in the second half (the first half would get 6 or 7 stars if possible).

12 of 12 people found this review helpful

  • Overall


This book absolutely captivated me. I couldn't "put it down." Stick with it at least through chapter 6 - I couldn't tell where the author was going. Once I was in step with author, I was HOOKED. Great narration with nice voices for characters. I don't know when another book will measure up to this one for me! Now I want to know more about Africa and Henry Morton Stanley and David Livingston!

11 of 11 people found this review helpful

  • Overall


This is a very elaborate history of the exploration to find the source of the Nile, and the characters that played the major roles.

The unbelievable toughness of the explorers, the travails of the journeys and the constant exposure to danger make for very interesting reading.

Superbly read, as always, by this stellar narrator.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Ricardo
  • Brasilia, DF, N/A, Brazil
  • 07-28-04


This was my first audio book and I found it great. The history is fascinating and the speaker is good. The book provides compelling details of the live of great explorers - Stanley and Livingstone - as well as many other adventurers such as Richard Burton, Speke, etc... The book also provide later information about the source of the Nile. I recommend it. Ricardo-Brasilia

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Colin
  • atascadero, CA, United States
  • 01-23-09

Fantastic Listen!

What an amazing story and incredibly well written! I'm normally a fiction guy but this story was truly better than fiction. From our comfortable lifestyles with modern conveniences it is so difficult to imagine going into the environment this adventurers ventured into.
Into Africa is incredibly well researched and holds the listeners interest all through the book. Livingstone and the characters in his story are fascinating people; some good, so not so good, but all very well researched so we learn to understand what motivates them and how they see the world. Like most people, I did not know much about Africa's history nor about the specifics of how slavery destroyed the continent so it was fascinating to learn and see Africa in such detail.
This is the first book of several dozen audio books I've listened to here that I've given 5 stars to.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Buddy
  • Montclair, NJ, USA
  • 06-27-07

Bloody Brilliant

Who hasn't wondered what the whole Stanley & Livingston saga was all about and what was behind those famous words 'Dr. Livingstone, I presume?' This story is spellbinding and I had a hard time turning it off when I got on or off the bus while commuting to NYC. I would recommend this book to everyone and give it the highest rating.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Warren
  • Merced, CA, USA
  • 09-06-05


This book caught my attention immediately. Having always wanted to learn a little about the history of Africa was the reason I bought it. I was captivated by the clever storytelling of Dugard. He brought together each character with skill and kept up the pace and suspense of what was going to happen next at just the right tempo. This is no Cliff Notes on the history of these people, but quite well researched. Especially nice was the epilogue telling of what eventually happened to each major character. I found myself anxious to get in the car to listen to more of it and even parked in a quiet place one day to finish a particular exciting chapter. This writer is equal to Stephen Ambrose or Rick Atkinson.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful