AFTER THE WIND by Lou Kasischke
Kirkus Star

AFTER THE WIND

1996 Everest Tragedy—One Survivor's Story
Email this review

KIRKUS REVIEW

In 1996, the worst disaster in recorded Mt. Everest climbing history occurred when, due to a combination of factors, eight people died on a single expedition. This memoir is Kasischke’s personal account of how he survived.

Hours before the tragedy, Kasischke’s reservations about the expedition were mounting. Too many people were climbing the mountain at once, and despite some unnecessary delays, the leader, Rob Hall, had continued to lead the climb, although the team wouldn’t be able to reach the top and return down before nightfall—a decision so poor that Kasischke and others blame it for the climbers’ deaths rather than the treacherous storm they faced that night. Kasischke is alive to tell his tale because he chose to turn around at a critical juncture, and he admits that he shouldn’t have even gone that far. He was trapped for days once the storm hit. The author dramatically recounts being frozen, dehydrated and snow blind and says that he relied on his love for his wife and his faith to get him through. It seems that Kasischke has chosen to relive this nightmare in order to come to grips with it and to honor those who didn’t make it, as well as to add a new perspective to a tale most people know via journalist Jon Krakauer, whose very presence, Kasischke implies, played an inadvertent role in what happened. Kasischke, however, never comes across as bitter or recriminatory but simply honest. He also pays tribute to his wife, Sandy, who, despite not being physically there, was a very real presence for him throughout the ordeal. The hand-drawn illustrations by Jane Cardinal also help the reader visualize the people and environs.

A vivid, intimate memoir that, with great clarity and attention to detail, tells an unforgettable survival story.

Pub Date: April 1st, 2014
ISBN: 978-1940877006
Page count: 328pp
Publisher: Good Hart Publishing, LC
Program: Kirkus Indie
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15th, 2014




BEST INDIE MEMOIRS OF 2014:

IndieTESORO by Veronica Picone
by Veronica Picone
IndieHeroes and Giants by Douglas B. Ashby
by Douglas B. Ashby
IndieTales of a Country Doctor by Paul Carter
by Paul Carter
Indie99 JOBS by Joe Cottonwood
by Joe Cottonwood
IndieVODKA SHOT, PICKLE CHASER by David A. Kalis
by David A. Kalis

SIMILAR BOOKS SUGGESTED BY OUR CRITICS:

NonfictionMOUNTAIN MADNESS by Robert Birkby
by Robert Birkby
NonfictionTHE CLIMB by Anatoli Boukreev
by Anatoli Boukreev
NonfictionINTO THIN AIR by Jon Krakauer
by Jon Krakauer