Here are reviews of my May reads, not too great of a month, but still came in at 1,236 pages. And 3 of them were climbing books
The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead (322 pages) 5/5
This book is so good, the pages fly by. Ending up an outcast by all other slaves on the Georgia plantation, Cora risks her life and that of many others- and others to come- to be free via the US slave escape routes on the Underground Railroad. Excellent read. Pulitzer Prize for 2017, Oprah's Book Club recommendation.
K2: Life and Death on the World's Most Dangerous Mountain by Ed Viesturs (354 pages) 5/5
I am totally obsessed with this mountain, having previously read K2: The Savage Mountain by legendary American mountaineer Charles Houston. K2 is the second highest peak in the World, near the Himalayas, but in an mountain range in Pakistan called Karakoram. With the second highest death rate of the "8000ers" (14 of the highest mountains in the world, all above 26,247 feet above sea level (or 8,000 meters), K2 has only been summited by about 300 people, with 77 fatalities. In this book, the American amazing- fabulous- stunning climber Ed Viesturs tells some of the stories of the summits... and the fatalities.
No Shortcuts to the Top: Climbing the World's 14 Highest Peaks by Ed Viesturs (368 pages) 5/5
I was so taken by Ed Viesturs writing in the book above, I had to read more of his work. He is the only American to face climbed all of the world's 14 8000ers, and the 5th person to do it without supplemental oxygen. This man is amazing to me. I am totally smitten. He has furthered my desire of mountain climbing and I have since joined Instagram and am addicted to climbing videos on YouTube His email address is on his website, I wish I could get the courage Ed Viesturs also was the subject of the most successful IMAX documentary in history, about an Everest expedition that took place during the 1996 tragedy. That tragedy was the subject of Jon Krakauer's book Into Thin Air, which started this all for me.
I ended the month with
Eiger Dreams by Jon Krakauer 4/5
Jon Krakauer is an interesting figure in the mountaineering and climbing society. Eiger Dreams is a collection of some of his articles for Outdoor Magazine, a magazine devoted to aspects of climbing. I was introduced to ice climbers who climb frozen waterfalls and to the hip French Alps town of Chamonix. Eiger is a mountain in the Swiss Alps.