The Boys of Everest

  • by Clint Willis
  • Narrated by James Adams
  • 15 hrs and 59 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

This gripping story of courage, achievement, and heartbreaking loss tells of Bonington's Boys, a band of climbers who reinvented mountaineering during the three decades after Everest's first ascent. Chris Bonington's inner circle included a dozen of the most renowned climbers, who took increasingly terrible risks on now legendary expeditions to the world's most fearsome peaks, and paid an enormous price. Most of them died in the mountains, leaving behind the hardest question of all: was it worth it? Based on interviews with surviving climbers and others, as well as five decades of journals, expedition accounts, and letters, The Boys of Everest provides the closest thing to an answer that we will ever have. It offers riveting descriptions of what Bonington's Boys found in the mountains, as well as an understanding of what they lost there.


What the Critics Say

"A dramatic and romantic look at the greatest generation of climbers." (Library Journal)
"[A] gripping adventure saga...of life spent teetering on the edge of the abyss." (Publishers Weekly)
"A death-haunted saga of the scalers of heaven...the same class and caliber (as) Into Thin Air." (Kirkus Reviews)


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Beautifully read by James Adams

This exhaustive tome sustained me on a cross-country trip. With sustained moments of poetic description that suits mountaineering perfectly, it details everything you ever wanted to know about Chris Bonnington's climbing life--except its context in his life outside climbing. I found the lack of contextual information in this otherwise methodically-researched book increasingly frustrating as this audiobook unfolded over 15 plus hours. We learn everything about the lives of Bonnington's Boys in the mountains, including their unique spiritual journeys and fates, but the disconnect with their "worldly" responsibilities in their everyday lives is too jangling. The result is too much hero worship of characters whose flaws we sense but cannot ever really grasp.

That said, thre's nothing lovelier than James Adams's soothing, authoritative voice with its appropriate upper class English accent. If you like great recordings of nonfiction, this should go on your list.
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- Suzanne


Facinating study of the evolution of the British Climbing establishment. Although the descriptions of some of Bonington's actual expeditions are certainly interesting, the real attraction of this book is the interaction between the key players and how their different, yet similar experiences on the highest peaks in the world shaped climbing and mountaineering into what it is today.
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- Chris

Book Details

  • Release Date: 09-25-2007
  • Publisher: Blackstone Audio, Inc.