Before there were role-playing games, or even sci-fi or fantasy books making my imagination run wild, there was Theodore Roosevelt. The man is so dynamic in action, so diverse in his interests, so legendary in his deeds, that I dare any of you to name a more exciting POTUS in the 20th or 21st centuries.
When I discovered this today, while trolling around the CoC list on rpggeek.com, I was giddy.
The description covers most of it. An aging, post-presidential Roosevelt headed an expedition into the Amazon to be the first civilized people to traverse the uncharted River of Doubt. From logistics to luck, the expedition was a disaster and it could be said that TR escaped with his life, although the calamities of the trip did weaken the Bull Moose and contributed to his early death in 1919.
This book is basically a copy of Roosevelt's Through the Brazilian Wilderness, his quite biased first-hand account of the journey. It's a quick and enjoyable read, and I thoroughly recommend it.
The genius is in the footnotes and the appendix of this new printing. Through each portion of the book, footnotes appear giving suggestions how to properly adapt this into a role-playing campaign... with Lovecraftian undertones.
Given the number of locals lost, the encounters with odd tribesmen, and other strange encounters that occurred, it's quite probable the malaria didn't do Roosevelt in, failed sanity checks from Mythos encounters weakened him.
The appendix is supposed to have the primary participants statted up (with BRP, I'm assuming). I know, I admit it, I haven't actually purchased or read the product, but the concept of adapting historical books for role-playing is a phenomenal idea, and I may need to do a little research to see what other events have been done in such a fashion.
Even if the rpg stuff is absolute dreck (I'll find out tomorrow), the download from lulu is $1.01 and the print copy of the book is $9.12. Guaranteed, you will make worse decisions with your money this week.