Do you think an expedition to climb Mt. Everest sounds fun? Well, if you do, you should read this book.

Jon Krakauer is very sympathetic to the plight of mountaineers. He understands very well why people are attracted to high mountains, their rarified atmosphere, and to the incredible opportunities to die. And the latter are the most remarkable things about this book.

Sent by Outside magazine to discover the thrill of Everest climbing, Mr. Krakauer sets out with a group of unprepared humans and a set of sherpas and guides to climb the highest of Earthly mountains. The expedition succeeds, and all but a handful make it to the top.

Coming down turns to be difficult. Many a member perish, and the book recounts the deaths with mastery and conviction.