Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Into Thin Air (Book Review)

One of the things that I like to do when time permits, is read books that are about hiking, mountaineering, or the outdoors. I am sure a large number of our audience has already read Into Thin Air by Jon Krakauer, but I just got the chance to read this book and I would highly recommend it to others.

Into Thin Air is a great read and gives a first hand account of the 1996 Mt. Everest Disaster. Jon Krakauer, who was a member of Rob Hall's 1996 Everest Team, does a great job of putting the reader right in the middle of climbing the highest mountain on earth. Krakauer brings the reader along on his ill-fated expedition in which a total of 8 people would lose their lives and several others were stranded on Mt. Everest due to a rough storm. Parts of the story are hard to read, especially the chapter that contains the satellite phone conversation between Rob Hall, who was stuck on the summit of Mt. Everest, and his wife who was at home in New Zealand. It is a gripping story about the events that unfolded in May of 1996 on Mt. Everest.

Into Thin Air also explores the controversy that erupted after the 1996 Mt. Everest tragedy. It appeared to me that Jon Krakauer gave as honest an account as could be given of what unfolded on that May 10th day in 1996. This book is a very fast read and ultimately reminds you of how dangerous a sport climbing tall mountains is.

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