Based on interviews with surviving climbers and others, as well as five decades of journals, expedition accounts, and letters, The Boys of Everest provides the closest thing to an answer that we will ever have. It offers riveting descriptions of what Bonington's Boys found in the mountains, as well as an understanding of what they lost there.
©2006 Clint Willis; (P)2007 Blackstone Audio Inc.
"A dramatic and romantic look at the greatest generation of climbers." (Library Journal)
"[A] gripping adventure saga...of life spent teetering on the edge of the abyss." (Publishers Weekly)
"A death-haunted saga of the scalers of heaven...the same class and caliber (as) Into Thin Air." (Kirkus Reviews)
This exhaustive tome sustained me on a cross-country trip. With sustained moments of poetic description that suits mountaineering perfectly, it details everything you ever wanted to know about Chris Bonnington's climbing life--except its context in his life outside climbing. I found the lack of contextual information in this otherwise methodically-researched book increasingly frustrating as this audiobook unfolded over 15 plus hours. We learn everything about the lives of Bonnington's Boys in the mountains, including their unique spiritual journeys and fates, but the disconnect with their "worldly" responsibilities in their everyday lives is too jangling. The result is too much hero worship of characters whose flaws we sense but cannot ever really grasp.
That said, thre's nothing lovelier than James Adams's soothing, authoritative voice with its appropriate upper class English accent. If you like great recordings of nonfiction, this should go on your list.
Facinating study of the evolution of the British Climbing establishment. Although the descriptions of some of Bonington's actual expeditions are certainly interesting, the real attraction of this book is the interaction between the key players and how their different, yet similar experiences on the highest peaks in the world shaped climbing and mountaineering into what it is today.
The narrator does not add to an already dry story. I love mountain stories but found this to be too full of details, dull and anticlimatic. I got through 3/4 of the book and wished I would have given up earlier.
I thought this was an excellent book, it took you through the lives of Chris Bonington and a group of climber as they grew up and became mountaineers.
"great book, shame about the reading"
exciting and insightful...it made me feel as though I was being introduced to the people involved and learned about them as individuals....I began to understand 'why' and also 'how'. This was despite nearly terminating the book several times due to the appalling reading!
"so good it gives you vertigo"
As a non-climber I wondered if I would enjoy this book, but I really really did. Well written, some of it in prose style, rather than just a dry factual account, it transports you to the cold, dangerous and wind bitten faces of the worlds great mountains. It makes you wonder why they do it!
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