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Book Review: The Indiana Jones Handbook
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Week of Geek: Indiana Jones

Indiana Jones HandbookThe Indiana Jones Handbook
The Complete Adventurer’s Guide
by Denise Kiernan and Joseph D’Agnese
Quirk Books
Release date: May 14, 2008

The Indiana Jones Handbook: The Complete Adventurer’s Guide is packed with instructions that will aid you, should you find yourself at a lost archaeological site, in a fight with a gang of swordsman, enclosed in a booby-trapped area, or even facing the wrath of God.

But unlike other survival/adventure-type guides, like The Zombie Survival Guide, The Indiana Jones Handbook also covers scenarios that people have faced — and some that, hey, you could possibly come up against.

If you’re a fan of famous adventurer Indiana Jones, you will absolutely love this book from authors Denise Kiernan and Joseph D’Agnese. We’ve all seen Indy survive everything from a fist fight to the aforementioned wrath of God. Ever wonder how he does it? The authors will not only tell you how, but also what to pack, all accompanied by instructional illustrations.

The handbook is divided into six chapters. “Chapter 1: Expedition Essentials” gives you the mundane details on what to pack, what to do if you’re poisoned, and if you want to be just like Indy, there’s a section on how to use a bullwhip.

Indy has had to resort to some unconventional methods of travel and transportation. In “Chapter 2: Getting Around” you can learn how to run on top of a moving train or pass underneath a moving trunk. Indy makes it look easy, and according to this handbook, it apparently is. Try at your own risk! This chapter also covers how to fly a plane, should you find yourself onboard abandoned by your pilots at high attitudes. This section I paid close attention to, because let’s face it, you never know if you’ll be called upon to fly a plane.

“Chapter 3: People Skills” will really help you blend in on your expedition. If that doesn’t work, you might have to fight off hostile natives and enemy henchman whether by fist, or pistol, or whip.

Modern vehicles might not always be an available mode of transportation, so “Chapter 4: The Animal Kingdom” shows you how to ride a horse and an elephant. While the latter might not be useful for all of you couch potatoes (like me), it was still an interesting read and made me pay closer attention to the elephant mounting and riding scenes in Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom. This chapter also covers the creepy crawlies that Indy typically comes into contact with — spiders, rats, and snakes.

But what would your adventure be without a treasure to discover? “Chapter 5: On-Site Skills” delves into the archaeological aspects of your expedition. Everything from excavating, to secret passageways, and hieroglyphs and ancients writings are covered in this chapter. But if you find your expedition taking a turn for the bizarre, you’ll need the advice of “Chapter 6: Supernatural Skills.” In this chapter, you’ll learn how to break a zombie curse, deal with voodoo dolls, and escape the wrath of God.

Along with the step-by-step instructional diagrams, there’s color photos from the original Indiana Jones trilogy, as well as tidbits from scenes in the latest film installment, Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. The Indiana Jones Handbook is a fun guide for adventure enthusiasts, and a must-read for Indiana Jones fans.

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