/ Holiday Book
Hello good people of UKC,
so the annual beach holiday is almost upon me! My limited selection of clothes and shorts are packed as too is what can only be described as an impressive collection of construction toys to keep the toddler amused on the beach!
what I’m looking for is some ideas for holiday reading, ideally something along the lines of climbing/ mountaineering or running or general adventure! Time maybe limited so something I can dig in and out of!
look forward to hearing some suggestions,
This doesn’t fit your criteria really but City of Thieves (by David Benioff, one of the writers for Game of Thrones) is set around Leningrad in WW2 and follows the quest of two prisoners to acquire a dozen eggs with which they’ve been told they can buy their freedom. It’s a page turner; it is intense but has a humorous and gentle side to it too.
More on track with the OP, how about a compilation such as The Edge – An Anthology of Climbing Adventures – that you could dip in and out of in between dips in the sea and trips to the bar?
A few adventure books.
Alaska Wilderness by Robert Marshal. His account of several trips to Northern Alaska in the 30's. Great book.
The Worst Journey in the World. The definitive account of Scott's final Antarctic expedition.
North. Nansen's account of his oddessy across the Arctic Ocean. An incredible story of not just surviving but living in one of the most inhospitable places on earth.
Try the Fergus Fleming books 'barrows boys, 90 degrees North and killing dragons. My favourite non fiction books
> The Worst Journey in the World. The definitive account of Scott's final Antarctic expedition.
Worth reading, but not really the definitive account of Scott's expedition. The worst journey of the title is an expedition that Cherry-Garrard and companions undertook to recover Emperor Penguin eggs from a remote location in an Antarctic winter. It was a remarkable tale of survival.
In a similar vein, David Roberts' Alone on the Ice tells of Douglas Mawson's epic expedition 1911/12 expeditions, and is another remarkable tale of survival.
Both books give fascinating insights not just into the hardships of polar expeditions, but into the ways in which the class system and societal hierarchies remained in place, even under the most trying of circumstances.
Another interesting take on Scott's last expedition is Roland Huntford's Race for the South Pole, which places diary entries from Scott and Amundsen's parties together in an attempt to demonstrate why Amundsen succeeded and Scott failed. Huntford is of course known to be highly critical of Scott, so anyone who wishes an unblemished picture of Scott should avoid this, but the diary entries themselves tell a fascinating story.
> Worth reading, but not really the definitive account of Scott's expedition. The worst journey of the title is an expedition that Cherry-Garrard and companions undertook to recover Emperor Penguin eggs from a remote location in an Antarctic winter. It was a remarkable tale of survival.
Oh yes, the Worst Journey was the trip to collect the eggs but the book covers the whole expedition from planning to the return home in great detail. That's why I called it definitive.
Thinking about it, Shackelton's book "South" on his fateful expedition is also a remarkable tale.
Another which is perhaps more suitable for a beach than accounts of survival in frozen wastes, would be "Heat", Ranulf Fiennes stories of his adventures in hot places.
I bought Martin Moran's "Higher Ground" a year or so ago, and was reminded to actually pick it up and read it by the recent tragic events concerning his party on Nanda Devi. It is very different from a lot of mountaineering books, focusing as it does on the career of a guide, rather than on a single (or even several) cutting-edge ascent(s). Thoroughly engaging though, and very well written. Would recommend.
Psychovertical by Andy Kirkpatrick jumps about a bit so can be read in bits quite easily.
Mad Bad and Dangerous to Know is an absolute corker of a book, Ranulph Fiennes is an utter hero and a brilliantly entertaining writer.
If you want something to change your perception about the second world war, perhaps you could check out No Picnic on Mount Kenya, the translation to English is a touch ropy but bloody hell it's a FANTASTIC story!
> If you want something to change your perception about the second world war, perhaps you could check out No Picnic on Mount Kenya, the translation to English is a touch ropy but bloody hell it's a FANTASTIC story!
Yes. It starts rather weakly but soon develops into a great yarn. And in the true spirit of mountaineering.
Try Gary Gibson's little tome, Blood, Sweat and Smears, you could do worse.....!
Thanks everyone for the suggestions- I settled on 'underland' By Robert Macfarlane. which is an absorbing read and pretty thought provoking, I'm definitely seeing some things differently .
As an alternative, and funny read, try Kerby by Graeme Johnston - tales of growing up in the 90’s but relatable to most eras
Bond by Simon McCartney. Best climbing book I've ever read. Amazing story.
The Snow Leopard by Peter Matthiessen is about so much more that a snow leopard, highly recommended.
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