In State of Wonder, Patchett takes the reader into the primitive world of the Amazon in Brazil. Marina Singh gave up a career as a doctor after botching an emergency delivery as an intern, opting instead for the more orderly world of research for a pharmaceutical company. While trying to locate a rogue scientist, Dr. Annick Swenson, Marina’s colleague and friend, Anders Eckman, is reported to have died in the jungle. Marina is asked by her company’s CEO to locate his body and communicate with the mysterious and uncommunicative Dr. Swenson. The doctor has been working on a fertility drug by studying the Lakashi people, whose women bear children into old age. Marina’s search is fraught with poisonous snakes and poisonous memories, malarial mosquitoes and sickening losses, but her time among the Lakashi tribe is transformative. Patchett exhibits an extraordinary ability to bring the horrors and the wonders of the Amazon jungle to life, and her singular characters are wonderfully drawn. Part scientific thriller,part engaging personal odyssey, “State of Wonder” is a suspenseful adventure with an unexpected ending and other assorted surprises.