Hal is an ex-Everest guide who, after the death of one of his clients has promised himself he would never go back. But when Hal meets Josie a fragile alliance is formed, and he makes the fateful decision to guide her. Only by confronting those lethal slopes can he ever put the past behind him.
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To his credit, Matt Dickinson's mountain-bound tomes need no dramatic embellishment. The inhospitable climes of Mount Everest, upon which he has nearly died twice, provide drama in abundance. Consequently, his claims of mere footsteps feeling like entire marathons are quite believable. Unlike The Death Zone, which recounted his own hazard-filled Everest experiences, High Risk is a fictional effort, but one which is imbued with a superior degree of tension and breathtaking excitement. When her tycoon husband perishes on Everest, headstrong TV presenter Josie Turner is determined to ascend the mountain to seek "closure"--egged on by her ratings-hungry bosses. Aided by veteran avalanche expert Hal Maher, who has his own reasons for confronting the ultimate peak, their heeding of the mountain's siren call soon leads to a desperate struggle for survival as they become enveloped in a vicious storm.
Dickinson's technical authority is flawless (the mechanics of avalanches is fascinating), yet his major success lies in his ability to portray Everest as a tangible, enigmatic enemy--as enticing as it is fearsome. The harsh environment with its relentless silence attacks the mind as well as the body:
To her, the cold was an assailant - an enemy intent on destroying her. Josie began to fear that the cold was now so deep inside her that she would never chase it out again.Dickinson successfully transfers first-hand experience to the fictional arena, providing a bona-fide page-turner. High Risk expertly portrays the magnetic and dangerous relationship between man and environment. --Danny Graydon Review:
'A breathtaking first novel of rare power and intensity.' -- Irish News
'A compelling and action-filled story.' -- Daily Mail
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Book Description Arrow, 2001. Paperback. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # 99278766