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Touching my father's soul : a Sherpa's journey to the top of Everest
Jamling Tenzing Norgay
Adult Nonfiction GV199.92 .N65 2001

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From Publishers' Weekly:

The 1996 Everest tragedy is widely known through Krakauer's Into Thin Air. Here, Norgay, son of one of the first two men to scale Mt. Everest in 1953, describes his experience leading the IMAX team that filmed their own 1996 climb. Lower on the mountain during the infamous storm, Norgay's team had radio contact with the doomed expedition and participated in later stages of rescue. Possessing an amazing trove of cultural and historical understanding, Norgay, with Coburn (coauthor of Everest: Mountain Without Mercy), intersperses his narrative with stories of his father's famous ascent and provides insights into the society of the Sherpa, the Tibetan Buddhists who help Westerners climb Everest. Physiologists believe, he writes, that Tibetans "may possess a gene that allows for more efficient oxygen delivery at high elevations." Western readers will be struck by the significance Sherpas ascribe to fate in achieving a feat that for most Westerners is a glorification of individual strength and will. It's refreshing to encounter a Tibetan sensibility and perspective in an adventure narrative, although there's not much new here about the tragic 1996 events, the commercialization of Everest, the competition among groups, etc. But Norgay's clever weaving of the parallel stories of his climb and his father's enriches an already gripping tale. The broad, well-established adventure audience will devour this book. Photos. (May) Forecast: A 15-city author tour, Krakauer's name on the cover, Sherpa mystique and the skillful prose and storytelling will win this book the acclaim and sales it deserves. (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

From Library Journal:

In an effort to emulate and understand his father, who with Sir Edmund Hillary reached the summit of Mount Everest in 1953, Norgay writes of his youth, his feelings, and his experiences in the 1996 IMAX climb. While both versions weave back and forth between the planning for and execution of the IMAX climb to the distant past, recent past, and back to the first-person report, it is not difficult to follow these transitions. Two principal differences emerge between the programs. First, although Norbu Tenzing, narrating the abridged set, is now a San Franciscan, he still has an accent and pace that require more active listening, while Grover Gardner's inflection, delivery, and fluid reading style on the unabridged tapes will be more comfortable to most American listeners. Both readers are eloquent in pronunciation of difficult place and personal names; however, one may sometimes get a little lost in all the obscure terms. Second, the unabridged version fills in more about Norgay's cultural background and offers some additional musings on life, death, religion, and the mountain. Those who appreciate the more contemplative approach to life and adventure may enjoy his thoughts about the after-life, gods, goddesses, ghosts, morals, offerings, and symbolism. The action is well described but slowly paced. Neither recording does much to help our understanding of why people take such risks or why we should think they are heroes, though that seems to be part of the writer's goal. Recommended for libraries with extensive adventure collections and patrons with mountain climbing interests. Carolyn Alexander, Brigadoon Lib., Salinas, CA(c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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