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Sir Edmund Hillary: An Extraordinary Life Paperback – April 1, 2013

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Sir Edmund Hillary: An Extraordinary Life + High Adventure: The True Story of the First Ascent of Everest + View from the Summit: The Remarkable Memoir by the First Person to Conquer Everest
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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Alexa Johnston is a writer and independent art curator. After working for nineteen years as a curator at Auckland Art Gallery, in 2002 she was curator of the exhibition Sir Edmund Hillary: Everest and Beyond for Auckland Museum. Her first book, Sir Edmund Hillary: An Extraordinary Life – a definitive biography of the legendary New Zealand mountaineer – was a finalist in the Montana Book Awards. An enthusiastic and accomplished baker from a young age, Alexa has published three cookbooks celebrating New Zealand's culinary history. The first Ladies, a Plate (2008) won a Montana Book Award, the Publishers' Association of New Zealand Award for Best Illustrated Book and was Recipe Book of the Year in the New Zealand Guild of Food Writers Culinary Quill Awards. This was followed by A Second Helping (2009) and What's For Pudding? (2011) and in 2012 a hardback collectors' edition of her baking recipes, Ladies, a Plate: The Collection (2012). For her latest book, Ladies, a Plate: Jams and Preserves, Alexa turns her attention to a once-essential branch of domestic cookery and makes a convincing case for bringing it back to the centre of our kitchen activities. Alexa Johnston makes and tests all the recipes for her cook books – and takes all the photographs – in her home kitchen in Auckland.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 504 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin Books New Zealand (April 1, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0143006460
  • ISBN-13: 978-0143006466
  • Product Dimensions: 7.8 x 5.2 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #538,687 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By D. Stuart on January 13, 2008
Format: Hardcover
Sir Edmund Hillary was an extraordinary man, who grew up in the most humble surroundings and driven, ultimately by his lifelong sense of being inadequate: of not measuring up. He suffered this at the hands of a cold father, and at a prestigious school that offered discouragement to young Edmund - labelling him as as an awkward misfit.

Solitary by nature, he found in New Zealand a love for the outdoors and a passion for the mountains. Of course by 1953 his fitness, and drive, took him to the top of Mt Everest, alongside Tenzing Norgay, and for the next 55 years Hillary lived in the shadow of that mountain.

By his choice he spent most of these incredible years giving himself to the people of Nepal - helping build schools, hospitals and airstrips not only through fund raising, but through hard physical work. In a sense he found a place where he really belonged and where he was loved.

Ed Hillary's own books suffer somewhat because his story has been too often repeated. How many times has he been asked to describe the feat of scaling Everest? Over the years the story has been worn through familiarity and its power eroded - and his own writing has shown not only this natural erosion, but has also revealed his own taciturn unwillingness to discuss himself in depth.

In this volume however, Johnston performs a wonderful job in capturing the heart of the man, and the glory of his personal journey. His commitment to the people of Nepal is an inspiration that has helped fire many others including fellow mountaieer Greg Mortenson Three Cups of Tea: One Man's Mission to Promote Peace . . . One School at a Time.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Neil J. Simpson on February 13, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I found this book to be inspiring, informative, comprehensive and very readable. After reading it I felt compelled to sign up for a 16 day trekking trip in Nepal. The only thing missing was information on Hillary's death since it was published earlier than that. I got the updated info on that from Wikipedia and taped it in the back.
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Format: Paperback
A decent biography of the person who conquered the Everest. The subject is fascinating and easily could have been a great read. Yet it was hard for me to relate to the journalistic writing style. An Extraordinary Life is a good introduction to Hillary's life, but unfortunately not a thrilling one.
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By nigel rowland on October 6, 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
informative and insightful
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