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Into Thin Air
John Krakauer

9781447200185 - resizedEdmund Mallory, one of the first and keenest adventurers on Mount Everest was once asked why he wanted to climb it. He famously answered, “Because it’s there”. And people have been climbing it, because it is there, ever since. Not all with success. Mallory himself was killed before ever reaching the summit and his body languished on the frozen slopes for many years before it was recovered. This may sound gruesome yet it is not uncommon. Among these unfortunate souls lie several who met their end on the 10th of May, 1996. Of the many who attempted to summit Everest that day, Jon Krakauer was one. A writer by trade and a keen and experienced climber, he was commissioned to write a piece on Everest and joined one of several guided expeditions heading to the summit. Into Thin Air tells the story of several groups on Everest that season, primarily focussing on the Adventure Consultants (of whom Krakauer was a member) and Mountain Madness. Searing, brave and laden down with survivor’s guilt, Into Thin Air is a paean to the lost, a desperate plea to those left behind and the compulsive storytelling of a man for whom the tale will never end. While an ultimately tragic tale, Krakauer does address the “why” of Everest. Making easier to understand why people look to that height of all heights and dream of ascension. They do it because they are alive; they do it because they can; they do it because they are looking for something regardless of risk; they do it because they are foolhardy; they do it because they long to dichotomously illustrate man’s dominance and insignificance. But mainly they do it because it’s there. Read Into Thin Air and I defy you to feel otherwise. Highly recommended.

Publication Information

Publisher: Pan
ISBN: 9781447200185

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