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Krakauer suggests far more questions than he answers
am 27. Mai 1999
As part of the audience Krakauer presumably was trying to reach (non-climbers who are interested in Everest and the 1996 tragedy) I don't know all that much about climbing in general or Everest in particular. Given that, it would have been easy to applaud the book and say, great job, terrific account. Having read two (better) books on the 1996 tragedy after I read this book, I simply can't be enthusiastic about the story overall. Krakauer does a terrific job of making the experience of climbing something people who doesn't do it can relate to, but his account of the tragedy quite frankly comes across as a desperate attempt to place blame. And given his nonexistent high-altitude experience prior to this climb, Krakauer is the last person who should have been making judgments. Essentially, it's a story of "this decision was bad, that decision was bad, this person and that person were both wrong in doing this and that." Krakauer claims that everyone involved in the summit attempt, storm, and subsequent rescue attempts was operating under impaired judgment from lack of oxygen and exhaustion. One is led to wonder just exactly how he escaped these problems to pass judgment on the decisions of climbers and guides with far more Himalayan and high-altitude experience than he had. Lastly, it seems ludicrous that a man who makes a living as an author can claim to give an accurate account of the disaster when he has missed so many crucial facts. Definitely NOT the best choice if you want an objective assessment of what happened and only want to read one book about Everest in May of 1996.