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Forever on the Mountain: The Truth Behind One of Mountaineering's Most Controversial and Mysterious Disasters Paperback – June 17, 2008
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Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
More About the Author
James M. Tabor (www.jamesmtabor.com) was born in Virginia, graduated from the University of Vermont, and has lived in Vermont since 1980. He earned an MFA from Johns Hopkins University and is a former Contributing Editor to Outside and SKI Magazines. His writing has also appeared in TIME, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, Smithsonian, Barron's,and many other national magazines. He was the writer and host of the national PBS series, "The Great Outdoors." In 2007, he was the co-creator and Executive Producer for the History Channel Special, "Journey to the Center of the World."
He is the bestselling,international award-winning author of FOREVER ON THE MOUNTAIN (2007, and BLIND DESCENT (2010).
From James Tabor:
"I received my MFA in the depths of a recession and couldn't find a job to save my life. With a wife and new baby, and needing a paycheck, I joined the Metropolitan Police Department of Washington, D.C.--then notorious as "The Murder Capitol of America." Policing in D.C. was exciting, exhausting,and dangerous. For a white, upper middle class, son of the South,(my great-grandfather Russell Tabor was a cavalryman with Jeb Stuart) it was also an incredibly valuable, heart-opening, and rewarding experience. To put it bluntly, a lot of cops were dying then, and if incredible African American training officers had not taken me under their wings, I might not be writing to you now.) I hope to write a memoir of those days on the street at some point--a kind of "Training Day" in reverse. Or maybe it'll morph into a novel.
That was one kind of extreme experience. Over the decades, research for my nonfiction writing introduced me to a lot more: mountaineering, hang gliding, scuba diving, caving, horse wrangling,windsurfing,and others. Those close encounters with what Hunter S. Thompson astutely called "edgework" now inform my fiction, as well.
My website, jamesmtabor.com, has lots more details about the books, me, and my life. I'll end by saying that I love hearing from readers, both fans and critics, and promise to respond to every note I get. (Not always quickly, but I will respond.)"
Top Customer Reviews
To me there is no great mystery. A vicious storm resulted in the deaths of seven climbers. Delays and bureaucratic bungling in declaring an emergency and in launching an all-out rescue may have frustrated all but changes would not have resulted in saving the seven lives.
One weakness in the book results from the author "imagining" what occurred and by doing so leading readers to think the summit team dug snow caves and survuved for severeal days in those caves. I don't believe that happened.
The book by Howard Snyder, The Hall of the Mountain King, about the same climb is a precise description of the climb although it highlights some biases against the Wilcox faction.
Overall- well done but readers must separate fact from authors guesses as to what happened.
I had a hard time understanding why Wilcox was the target of blame for the tragedy. Even if all of the criticisms of the expedition are accepted, they seem to have little causal relation to the deaths on the mountain. His decisionmaking should be judged based on the situation as it unfolded, not as we now know it ultimately would unfold. Only his failure to call for a full rescue effort at the first opportunity may have made a difference, yet that gets little play. The failure of Park Service officials to appreciate the emergency and act promptly is troubling, yet there remains a serious question as to whether that would have ultimately made a difference.
I knew nothing about the 1967 disaster before I read this book, so all of my views are formed by its contents. My primary criticism is the effort to reconstruct conversations for which there is no living witness. Tabor would have been better to describe his conjectures without the level of false precision implicit in his faux dialogue or description of their actions during the storm. Even though a reasonably careful reader would not be misled, it puts the reader needlessly on guard, even during the eyewitness accounts.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
The book was a birthday gift for a friend. We did not check the book before sending it on. The recipient contacted us to let us know that the cover was upside down, the chapters... Read morePublished 2 days ago by Karen Atwood
Impressive book on a sad topic. Increases my respect for nature and the understanding that we as humans continue to test her and continue to lose. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Amazon Customer
Tabor apparently put himself as some sort of authority and spares no ink on attacking Brad Washburn, who is the real legend. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Shu Guice
This is a fairly good story but hard to swallow. I have a difficult time reading about people who do stupid stuff and then expect to get rescued when they're in over their heads.Published 2 months ago by Terry P. Rizzuti
A mixture of lots of research and assumptions coming out of thin air. Researched parts good; assumptions made good reading but . . . Read morePublished 3 months ago by pete salomone
Pretty quickly into the book I was disappointed at the writer's attempt to disclose the "truth" behind this tragedy by assuming thoughts, motives, and actions based on what... Read morePublished 5 months ago by BushWoman
I enjoyed this book and came away feeling it was an balanced and unbiased look at the tragic events, based on a ton of research and interviews. Read morePublished 7 months ago by Peter E. McGinn
The author repeats himself. He exhausts the events but doesn't enlighten. Use of first names mAkes distinguishing them difficult. Read morePublished 8 months ago by KMAC