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No Shortcuts to the Top: Climbing the World's 14 Highest Peaks
No Shortcuts to the Top Climbing the World's 14 Highest Peaks
Author: Ed Viesturs, David Roberts
This gripping and triumphant memoir follows a living legend of extreme mountaineering as he makes his assault on history, one 8,000-meter summit at a time. — For eighteen years Ed Viesturs pursued climbing’s holy grail: to stand atop the world’s fourteen 8,000-meter peaks, without the aid of bottled oxygen. But No Shortcuts to the ...  more » is as much about the man who would become the first American to achieve that goal as it is about his stunning quest. As Viesturs recounts the stories of his most harrowing climbs, he reveals a man torn between the flat, safe world he and his loved ones share and the majestic and deadly places where only he can go.

A preternaturally cautious climber who once turned back 300 feet from the top of Everest but who would not shrink from a peak (Annapurna) known to claim the life of one climber for every two who reached its summit, Viesturs lives by an unyielding motto, “Reaching the summit is optional. Getting down is mandatory.” It is with this philosophy that he vividly describes fatal errors in judgment made by his fellow climbers as well as a few of his own close calls and gallant rescues. And, for the first time, he details his own pivotal and heroic role in the 1996 Everest disaster made famous in Jon Krakauer's Into Thin Air.

In addition to the raw excitement of Viesturs’s odyssey, No Shortcuts to the Top is leavened with many funny moments revealing the camaraderie between climbers. It is more than the first full account of one of the staggering accomplishments of our time; it is a portrait of a brave and devoted family man and his beliefs that shaped this most perilous and magnificent pursuit.
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ISBN-13: 9780767924719
ISBN-10: 0767924711
Publication Date: 11/27/2007
Pages: 384
Edition: Reprint
  • Currently 4.4/5 Stars.

4.4 stars, based on 17 ratings
Publisher: Broadway
Book Type: Paperback
Other Versions: Hardcover, Audio CD
Members Wishing: 1
Reviews: Member | Amazon | Write a Review

Top Member Book Reviews

reviewed No Shortcuts to the Top: Climbing the World's 14 Highest Peaks on + 8 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 3
This was a very good book. Ed Viesturs does an excellent job on explaining all the aspects of climbing and what pushed him to climb the 14 8,000m peaks in the world. He's led a very interesting life and he doesn't shy away from anything.

There's a lot of adventure and excitment in the book, paticularly when things are going downhill. It's fast-paced, engaging and well written. There were a lot of points where I couldn't stop reading because I needed to know what happened next. I really loved it.

The only con to this book is that he jumps around a little bit at times. He'll be discussing one thing in, say, 2004 and then suddenly he's in 2001. It can be a bit disconcerting, and sometimes I had to thumb back a few pages to see where I was again.

I highly recommend it.
reviewed No Shortcuts to the Top: Climbing the World's 14 Highest Peaks on + 11 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
Ever want to know what kind of grit it takes to get to the top of some of the world's tallest peaks? Anyone interested in outdoor adventures will be captivated by the sacrifices made by this mountain climber as he strives to bag the tallest 14 mountains in the friends frozen to death in plain sight, gutting out a makeshift living in order to live his dream, watching the death toll of his friends rise while in pursuit of thin air. It will also give you concrete proof that your gut provides sound counsel, if you will only learn to listen. Being an outdoor enthusiast myself, I totally admired his chutzpah. These high mt. peak baggers are a sub-culture all of their own and this book provides a quick peek into their world of rock, ice and sheer guts.
reviewed No Shortcuts to the Top: Climbing the World's 14 Highest Peaks on + 550 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
I got this book formMy husband, who says the stories were very interesting but this guy is not a good writer.
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reviewed No Shortcuts to the Top: Climbing the World's 14 Highest Peaks on + 2 more book reviews
I enjoyed this book. It was interesting to me because I enjoy hiking. Now I know I will never be interested in mountain climbing. The book gives a first hand account of the authors life as a climber. How he got started and all the trials and triumphs of his career.