Blind Descent by Brian Dickinson was a decent book, but I thought the author was too self-focused for most of the book. I kept seeing his ego instead of God. I never read a concise reason as to why he was climbing Everest. He said that he talked it over with his wife & prayed about it, but he never gave a reason.
I bought this book to give to my father-in-law for father's day and read it before giving it to him. Extreme sporting isn't really my thing so I didn't expect to love it, but I found it to be an interesting glimpse into the world of mountain climbing and I thought it was easy to read for someone who doesn't know much about the topic. I also greatly valued his Christian perspective. I don't think I would read more books on Everest or mountain climbing, but I did find this book enjoyable and worth the read.
Back cover: Alone and blind at 29,000 feet!
Former Navy rescue swimmer Brian Dickinson was roughly 1,000 feet from the summit of Mount Everest
also known as "the death zone" when his Sherpa became ill and had to turn back, leaving Brian with a difficult decision: should he continue to push for the summit, or head back down the mountain? After carefully weighing the options, Brian decided to continue toward the summit- alone. Four hours later, Brian solo summited the highest peak in the world. But the celebration was short-lived. After taking a few pictures, Brian radioed his team to let them know he had summited safely, and got ready to begin his descent. Suddenly, his vision became blurry, his eyes started to burn, and within seconds, e was rendered almost completely Blind. All alone at 29,035 feet, low on oxygen, and stricken with snow blindness, Brian was forced to inch his way back down the mountain relying on only his Navy survival training, his gut instinct, and his faith. In Blind Descent, Brian recounts in fantastic detail his extraordinary experience on Everest, demonstrating that no matter how dire our circumstances, there is no challenge too big for God.
I was really excited to get this book, for various reasons, one is because I just started mountaineering last year and got hooked. Growing up my Dad has always loved mountaineering, and always talked about Mt. Everest. and has quite a few movies about it. :) So because of his love of mountains I knew a bit about Mt. Everest. And as soon as I read the back cover I immediately was intrigued. He was blind and alone while slowly climbing down, and on the tallest mountain on the world? Scary.
Once I picked up this book, I was not disappointed. A bit afraid that the book would be slow, with details that went to the roof, and not interesting, my fears quickly disappeared. While there are great details, they weren't unnecessary, and it was very interesting. While climbing on the mountain he talks about what he experienced, and I felt like I was right there. It is well written, couldn't put it down, and is easy to understand.
I would definitely suggest this book.
For more about this author, go to: http://www.briandickinson.net/
Overall I would rate this book 5 out of 5.
(I received this book free from Tyndale for an honest review)