A chance rockfall climbing a slender sea stack inflicted such terrible head injuries on Paul Pritchard that he spent the next year fighting the hemiplegia which robbed his right side of feeling and played cruel tricks with speech and memory.
In his fight for recovery the reader triumphs with him as his brain remembers how to use each forgotten muscle. The book laces great climbing memories with coming to terms with selling his gear and becoming an onlooker. It paints a wry picture of himself and his fellow patients and examines his adjusted relationships with family and friends.
"synopsis" may belong to another edition of this title.
Paul Pritchard gained a reputation as a climber of routes of extreme technical difficulty. In 1998, a horrendous accident left him paralysed. This text recalls his climbing memories and tells of his fight for recovery.'Review:
"It's an unusual fact that all people in wheelchairs are drunk magnets ... if your idea of help is being hauled up a flight of stairs by some pissed-up punter, risking severe injury, when in reality you were trying to cross the road, then you're welcome to it."
Paul Pritchard had scaled mountains from the Andes to the Himalayas, but a small sea-stack in Tasmania was to be the scene of the most significant climb of his career.
From his struggle for life, hanging semi-conscious from a rope after being struck by a falling boulder, to the subsequent fight to unify his body and severely damaged brain, Pritchard traces a path to another way of living.
His previous award-winning book Deep Play: a Climber's Odyssey had explored the motivations that had driven him to seek out the dangers and rewards of top-level climbing. The Totem Pole puts everything he has learned about himself to the test on the long journey back from paralysis to the mountains.
Fellow patients, his medical team, friends and family are skilfully and perceptively drawn, but sharing the heart of the book is the woman whose superhuman efforts at the rock face saved his life and who was to end their relationship during his rehabilitation. The resolution of their story shows Pritchard at his clear-sighted best.
Humorous, cynical, lyrical and passionate, this is a story told without self-pity, but one which fathoms the depths of a quality of solitude that the author had once sought on the mountainside, but found to be the stuff of daily life after his injury.
A compelling chronicle of one man's reawakening. --Alex Hankin
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Book Description Constable, 1999. Hardcover. Book Condition: Very Good. Dust Jacket Condition: Very Good. Signed by the author on the title page illustrated 208 pages. Bookseller Inventory # 010294
Book Description Hardback. Book Condition: Very Good. The book has been read, but is in excellent condition. Pages are intact and not marred by notes or highlighting. The spine remains undamaged. Bookseller Inventory # GOR000982940
Book Description Hardback. Book Condition: Good. The book has been read but remains in clean condition. All pages are intact and the cover is intact. Some minor wear to the spine. Bookseller Inventory # GOR003136713
Book Description Constable, 1999. Hardcover. Book Condition: Very Good. Dust Jacket Condition: Very Good. First Edition. Very clean & tightly bound hardback book with no inscriptions, in a bright unclipped dustjacket which is rubbed at the edges otherwise appears little used. xiv + 208 pages, 11 photos on plates. Bookseller Inventory # 54780
Book Description Constable, London, 1999. Hard Cover. Book Condition: Very Good. Dust Jacket Condition: Very Good+. Reprint. Used book. VG condition, only fault is two small marks on two of the page crnrs. Not pr.-clipped.D/w is immaculate. 208pps. This book tells the story of the author, an accomplished climber, during his recovery from a serious injury sustained climbing a slender sea-stack in Tasmania called the Totem Pole. It is signed and inscribed by the author.The signature is in the form of initials as it was written after his serious head injury. Size: 8vo - over 7¾" - 9¾" tall. Signed by Author. Bookseller Inventory # 3644
Book Description Constable & Co. Ltd, London, 1999. Hard Cover. Book Condition: F. Dust Jacket Condition: F-. First Edition. F/F-. 8vo. original blue boards in dustwrapper (short closed tear at head of spine); pp. xiv (last blank), 208, with 12 illustrations. A fine copy. Winner of the 1999 Boardman-Tasker Prize for Mountain Literature. Bookseller Inventory # 001173