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Into Thin Air: A Personal Account of the Everest Disaster by [Jon Krakauer]
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Into Thin Air: A Personal Account of the Everest Disaster Kindle Edition

4.7 out of 5 stars 2,472 ratings

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Length: 304 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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Review

A harrowing tale of the perils of high-altitude climbing, a story of bad luck and worse judgment and of heartbreaking heroism. * People * Krakauer is an extremely gifted storyteller as well as a relentlessly honest and even-handed journalist, the story is riveting and wonderfully complex in its own right . . .To call the book an adventure saga seems not to recognize that it is also a deeply thoughtful and finely wrought philosophical examination of the self. * Elle * Into Thin Air ranks among the great adventure books of all time. * Wall Street Journal * This is a great book, among the best ever on mountaineering. Gracefully and efficiently written, carefully researched, and actually lived by its narrator. * Washington Post * [Krakauer] has produced a narrative that is both meticulously researched and deftly constructed. -- Alastair Scott * New York Times Book Review *

From the Inside Flap

A bank of clouds was assembling on the not-so-distant horizon, but journalist-mountaineer Jon Krakauer, standing on the summit of Mt. Everest, saw nothing that "suggested that a murderous storm was bearing down." He was wrong. The storm, which claimed five lives and left countless more--including Krakauer's--in guilt-ridden disarray, would also provide the impetus for Into Thin Air, Krakauer's epic account of the May 1996 disaster.
By writing Into Thin Air, Krakauer may have hoped to exorcise some of his own demons and lay to rest some of the painful questions that still surround the event. He takes great pains to provide a balanced picture of the people and events he witnessed and gives due credit to the tireless and dedicated Sherpas. He also avoids blasting easy targets such as Sandy Pittman, the wealthy socialite who brought an espresso maker along on the expedition. Krakauer's highly personal inquiry into the catastrophe provides a great deal of insight into what went wrong. But for Krakauer himself, further interviews and investigations only lead him to the conclusion that his perceived failures were directly responsible for a fellow climber's death. Clearly, Krakauer remains haunted by the disaster, and although he relates a number of incidents in which he acted selflessly and even heroically, he seems unable to view those instances objectively. In the end, despite his evenhanded and even generous assessment of others' actions, he reserves a full measure of vitriol for himself.
This updated trade paperback edition of Into Thin Air includes an extensive new postscript that sheds fascinating light on the acrimonious debate that flared between Krakauer and Everest guideAnatoli Boukreev in the wake of the tragedy. "I have no doubt that Boukreev's intentions were good on summit day," writes Krakauer in the postscript, dated August 1999. "What disturbs me, though, was Boukreev's refusal to acknowledge the possibility that he made even a single poor decision. Never did he indicate that perhaps it wasn't the best choice to climb without gas or go down ahead of his clients." As usual, Krakauer supports his points with dogged research and a good dose of humility. But rather than continue the heated discourse that has raged since Into Thin Air's denouncement of guide Boukreev, Krakauer's tone is conciliatory; he points most of his criticism at G. Weston De Walt, who coauthored The Climb, Boukreev's version of events. And in a touching conclusion, Krakauer recounts his last conversation with the late Boukreev, in which the two weathered climbers agreed to disagree about certain points. Krakauer had great hopes to patch things up with Boukreev, but the Russian later died in an avalanche on another Himalayan peak, Annapurna I.
In 1999, Krakauer received an Academy Award in Literature from the American Academy of Arts and Letters--a prestigious prize intended "to honor writers of exceptional accomplishment." According to the Academy's citation, "Krakauer combines the tenacity and courage of the finest tradition of investigative journalism with the stylish subtlety and profound insight of the born writer. His account of an ascent of Mount Everest has led to a general reevaluation of climbing and of the commercialization of what was once a romantic, solitary sport; while his account of the life and death of Christopher McCandless, who died of starvation afterchallenging the Alaskan wilderness, delves even more deeply and disturbingly into the fascination of nature and the devastating effects of its lure on a young and curious mind."

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 2094 KB
  • Print Length: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Macmillan; Main Market edition (1 November 1999)
  • Sold by: Macmillan (AU)
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0080K3NHE
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
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  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Screen Reader: Supported
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Customer Reviews:
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #26,170 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)

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Reviewed in Australia on 5 May 2017
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Reviewed in Australia on 21 November 2014
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millhall
4.0 out of 5 stars Tragedy on the top of the world.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 29 December 2018
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Bev1
5.0 out of 5 stars A haunting story. Five stars from a non climber.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 7 November 2017
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Woolco
4.0 out of 5 stars Haunting Tragedy
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 11 February 2016
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Tony Hodson
5.0 out of 5 stars Everest 1996 - The Definitive Version
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 31 May 2019
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Jon Lee
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing read, brilliant work of non fiction! (NO SPOILERS)
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 10 September 2018
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Will
2.0 out of 5 stars Longwinded
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 16 October 2019
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Colin Baker
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best books I’ve ever read
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 9 December 2018
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5.0 out of 5 stars A breathless account of horror on Everest
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 24 October 2019
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Parf
5.0 out of 5 stars A brilliant read!!
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 7 November 2019
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Dan Nickolls
5.0 out of 5 stars This is one of my all time favourites
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 12 March 2019
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Sarah
4.0 out of 5 stars Well worth a read
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 4 August 2019
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Allan One
5.0 out of 5 stars A Searing Account
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 14 April 2019
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P. Thomas
5.0 out of 5 stars Gripping account of an event that is beyond most people's experience
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 14 April 2016
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Glen Trew
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic book, terrifically well written
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 1 November 2019
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Audders
5.0 out of 5 stars Achingly Raw, Haunting, Tragic - Fantastic Read
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 10 June 2019
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