Thursday, May 01, 2008

Top ten books on Alpinism

Andy Cave is a world-class Alpinist and the author of Learning to Breathe and Thin White Line.

For the Guardian, he named a top 10 list of books on Alpinism. His criteria, followed by one title on the list:
For me, the best books on Alpinism describe those who have genuinely pushed the boundaries of what is possible. Successful mountaineering literature, however, must do more than just transport the reader to an alien, frozen world through evocative prose and original metaphor. The best have emotional depth, allowing the reader to engage with the protagonists' internal thoughts and motives. Done well, the common theme of courage overcoming adversity can inspire us to seek new challenges in our own lives.

A Slender Thread by Stephen Venables

This is a superb, nailbiting account of a British alpinist's narrow escape from death during an expedition to the Indian Himalayas. An exceptional mountaineer, Venables was the first Briton to ascend Everest without oxygen, and did so by a new route. But he is also a gifted writer willing to depict the fraught tensions among the disparate group of talented, determined individuals with whom he is climbing. Venables' vivid descriptions of the earth's high and wild places combined with the gripping action make this a must-read.
Read about Number One on Cave's list.

Visit Andy Cave's website.

--Marshal Zeringue