Do you like a touch of inspiration with your real-life adventure?
OK, I’ll admit I picked up this book because “everyone’s reading it.” It was featured in The Seattle Public Library’s “September Project” and the author Greg Mortenson, mountain climber turned humanitarian, spoke at the Library (listen to the podcast). But what really grabbed me once I started reading this book were the descriptions of mountain climbing in the forbidding Karkoram mountains of northern Pakistan and Mortenson’s encounters with tribal people in Korphe, a village nestled high in the mountains, who had never seen foreigners before. The descriptions of the mountains and their hardy residents are beautifully drawn. Mortenson learns a great deal from the many Pakistanis he meets. It is a pleasure and an inspiration to follow his personal quest over a decade to build schools for girls in impoverished villages throughout Pakistan and Afghanistan.
Touching My Father’s Soul: A Sherpa’s Journey to the Top of Everest by Jamling Tenzing Norgay
Norgay was a lead climber in the successful IMAX expedition that rescued several inexperienced climbers from Mt. Everest during the fateful 1996 climbing season chronicled by Jon Krakauer in Into Thin Air. The author grew up in the shadow of his famous father, the first Sherpa to reach the peak of Everest with Sir Edmund Hilary in 1953. Norgay’s ascent of the mountain becomes a pilgrimage of sorts as he reflects on his relationship with his father as well as his Buddhist and Sherpa heritage.
Miracle in the Andes: 72 Days on the Mountain and My Long Trek Home by Nando Parrado
Parrado was a young man in 1972 when the plane carrying his rugby team crashed high in the Andes Mountains. Pears Paul Read chronicled the ordeal in his best-seller Alive. Parrado now offers his own account of the disaster in a clear, unadorned style, and reflects on how his love for his father helped him to persevere. This gripping personal testimony of struggle and survival is hard to put down!