10 books like Everest

By Walt Unsworth,

Here are 10 books that authors have personally recommended if you like Everest. Shepherd is a community of 7,000+ authors sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Annapurna

By Maurice Herzog,

Book cover of Annapurna: The First Conquest of an 8,000-Meter Peak

Annapurna is a classic: a classic book about a classic climb. Annapurna is only the 10th highest mountain in the world, but it is the most dangerous of all 14 of the giants, those peaks over 8,000 meters. It should not even have been attempted under the circumstances described in this book. But never mind: the odds were utterly against success. No worries on that front; the French—they were the ones trying—were never going to be the first to summit a giant. Only no one told them. (Craig Storti’s forthcoming book retells this classic tale.)

Annapurna

By Maurice Herzog,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Annapurna as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Top 100 Sports Books of All Time, Sports Illustrated "Those who have never seen the Himalayas, those who never care to risk an assault, will know when they finish this book that they have been a companion of greatness."-New York Times Book Review In 1950, when no mountain taller than 8,000 meters had ever been climbed, Maurice Herzog led an expedition of French climbers to the summit of an 8,075-meter (26,493-foot) Himalayan peak called Annapurna. But unlike other climbs, the routes up Annapurna had never been charted. Herzog and his team had to locate the mountain using crude maps, pick…


Fallen Giants

By Maurice Isserman, Stewart Weaver,

Book cover of Fallen Giants: A History of Himalayan Mountaineering from the Age of Empire to the Age of Extremes

If you’re a Himalayan enthusiast, this book is a must. Heck, even if you’re not yet an enthusiast, you will be after you start reading Fallen Giants. Its sweep is magnificent, its story-telling superb. You’d think this book would get repetitive, so many mountains and so many climbs, but you’d be wrong.

Fallen Giants

By Maurice Isserman, Stewart Weaver,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Fallen Giants as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The story of the world's highest peaks and the remarkable people who have sought to climb them

The first successful ascent of Mount Everest in 1953 by Sir Edmund Hillary and his Sherpa teammate Tenzing Norgay is a familiar saga, but less well known are the tales of many other adventurers who also came to test their skills and courage against the world's highest and most dangerous mountains. In this lively and generously illustrated book, historians Maurice Isserman and Stewart Weaver present the first comprehensive history of Himalayan mountaineering in fifty years. They offer detailed, original accounts of the most…


Into the Silence

By Wade Davis,

Book cover of Into the Silence: The Great War, Mallory, and the Conquest of Everest

For anyone interested in George Mallory and the famous first three British Everest expeditions, it doesn’t get any better than Into the Silence. The research here is unparalleled and unprecedented, yielding a level of detail not found in any other books on this topic. If you think you’ve read all there is to say about these expeditions, you may be surprised. It’s a real stunner.

Into the Silence

By Wade Davis,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Into the Silence as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The definitive story of the British adventurers who survived the trenches of World War I and went on to risk their lives climbing Mount Everest.

On June 6, 1924, two men set out from a camp perched at 23,000 feet on an ice ledge just below the lip of Everest’s North Col. George Mallory, thirty-seven, was Britain’s finest climber. Sandy Irvine was a twenty-two-year-old Oxford scholar with little previous mountaineering experience. Neither of them returned.
 
Drawing on more than a decade of prodigious research, bestselling author and explorer Wade Davis vividly re-creates the heroic efforts of Mallory and his fellow…


The Moth and the Mountain

By Ed Caesar,

Book cover of The Moth and the Mountain: A True Story of Love, War, and Everest

This book is of the incredible-but-true genre. A man who knows neither how to fly nor how to climb buys a plane which he plans to fly to India, crash land on the lower slopes of Everest, and climb the rest of the way to the top—all for the (married) woman he loves. Does he make it? What a question! It’s the premise that matters.

The Moth and the Mountain

By Ed Caesar,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Moth and the Mountain as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

“An outstanding book.” —The Wall Street Journal * “Gripping at every turn.” —Outside * “A hell of a ride.” —The Times (London)

An extraordinary true story about one man’s attempt to salve the wounds of war and save his own soul through an audacious adventure.

In the 1930s, as official government expeditions set their sights on conquering Mount Everest, a little-known World War I veteran named Maurice Wilson conceives his own crazy, beautiful plan: he will fly a plane from England to Everest, crash-land on its lower slopes, then become the first person to reach its summit—completely alone. Wilson doesn’t…


The Ascent of Rum Doodle

By W.E. Bowman,

Book cover of The Ascent of Rum Doodle

Probably the funniest and most inventive climbing expedition book ever written, loved by climbers who appreciate its satire, spoof, mickey-taking pastiche of Serious Mountaineering Expedition Books. It is Chris Bonnington turned Wodehouse, Jon Krakauer rendered by Spike Milligan. Its knowing self-mockery of all the tropes and self-important delusions of Climbing is sharp and accurate enough to raise it high above whimsy. Wildly creative, it is impossible to read without snorting in one’s sleeping bag. It is the comic, ridiculous side of the great pursuit of Getting Higher.

The Ascent of Rum Doodle

By W.E. Bowman,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Ascent of Rum Doodle as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

An English comic novel about a World War II expedition to a Himalayan peak.

WITH AN INTRODUCTION BY BILL BRYSON

An outrageously funny spoof about the ascent of a 40,000-and-a-half-foot peak, The Ascent of Rum Doodle has been a cult favourite since its publication in 1956. Led by the reliably under-insightful Binder, a team of seven British men -- including Dr Prone (constantly ill), Jungle the route finder (constantly lost), Constant the diplomat (constantly arguing) -- and 3,000 Yogistani porters sets out to conquer the highest peak in the Himalayas.


White

By Rosie Thomas,

Book cover of White

Another novel - breathtaking descriptions that really put you on the mountain, and a trio of characters caught in a tangle of obsession. While you share every painful, astounding step, you’re aching for them to put their emotional baggage down, stop dwelling on the past, and instead seize the future. Great armchair adventuring, a complicated romance, and no easy answers. 

White

By Rosie Thomas,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked White as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

One Love. One Chance. Once Sacrifice. For Sam McGrath a brief encounter with a young woman, on a turbulent flight, changes his life. On impulse, crazily attracted to her, her vows to follow her - all the way to Nepal. Finch Buchanan is flying out as doctor to an expedition. But when she reaches the Himalayas she will be reunited with a man she has never been able to forget. Al Hood has made a promise to his daughter. Once he has conquered this last peak, he will leave the mountains behind forever. Everest towers over the group, silent and…


Into Thin Air

By Jon Krakauer,

Book cover of Into Thin Air: A Personal Account of the Mount Everest Disaster

Jon Krakauer lives to tell and write the tale of two misguided climbs up Mount Everest taking place the same weekend in May 1996. He’s there on a magazine assignment that morphs into a powerful book about bravery and also the hazards of hubris. Two world-class mountaineers (New Zealander Rob Hall and American Scott Fischer) take the risk of escorting commercial clients up Everest, some of whom have no business being there beyond the ability to pay about $60,000 apiece. Eight people perish in wicked weather, including Hall and Fischer. Seven others have to be rescued.

I recommend the paperback edition, which has an afterward not included with the hardcover. The book resonates on a personal level. I climbed Mount Kilimanjaro on a Fischer-led trip two years before. Scott invited me on this expedition. I couldn’t go, so instead received a chilling phone message from his assistant at 2 o’clock…

Into Thin Air

By Jon Krakauer,

Why should I read it?

9 authors picked Into Thin Air as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

#1 NATIONAL BESTSELLER • The epic account of the storm on the summit of Mt. Everest that claimed five lives and left countless more—including Krakauer's—in guilt-ridden disarray. 

"A harrowing tale of the perils of high-altitude climbing, a story of bad luck and worse judgment and of heartbreaking heroism." —PEOPLE

A bank of clouds was assembling on the not-so-distant horizon, but journalist-mountaineer Jon Krakauer, standing on the summit of Mt. Everest, saw nothing that "suggested that a murderous storm was bearing down." He was wrong. 

By writing Into Thin Air, Krakauer may have hoped to exorcise some of his own demons…


Peak

By Roland Smith,

Book cover of Peak

Peak is a climbing addict in trouble with the law. But he gets to join his estranged father on an expedition to climb Mount Everest. The catch is that his dad just wants to use Peak as a promotion for his climbing company. Peak has to navigate complex relationships, all while trying not to die. I loved the adventure, but also the window into why so many risk it all to reach the top.

Peak

By Roland Smith,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Peak as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

After Peak Marcello is arrested for scaling a New York City skyscraper, he's left with two choices: wither away in juvenile detention or go live with his long-lost father, who runs a climbing company in Thailand. But Peak quickly learns that his father's renewed interest in him has strings attached. Big strings: He wants Peak to be the youngest person to reach the Everest summit - and his motives are selfish at best. Even so, for a climbing addict like Peak, tackling Everest is the challenge of a lifetime. It's also one that could cost him his life.Roland Smith has…


Where the Mountain Casts Its Shadow

By Maria Coffey,

Book cover of Where the Mountain Casts Its Shadow: The Dark Side of Extreme Adventure

Mountaineering attracts people of lionlike courage. What of the people who wait for them at home? When Maria Coffey started dating a climber, she found herself part of an exclusive club…and she soon needed them more than ever after her partner was lost in an accident. As she struggles through her bereavement she examines the adventuring nature, and the bravery needed to make a life with such a person.

Where the Mountain Casts Its Shadow

By Maria Coffey,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Where the Mountain Casts Its Shadow as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Drawing on interviews with many leading mountaineers or their survivors, Coffey goes beyond the typical climbing book to question the reasons why climbers risk their lives. The result is a powerful, affecting book that strips the romance from adventure and returns it to the human realm: the parents, spouses, children, and partners of climbers who until now have maintained their code of silence. Interviewees include Jim Wickwire, Conrad Anker, Joe Simpson, Chris Bonington, Ed Viesturs and others.


Annapurna

By Arlene Blum,

Book cover of Annapurna: A Woman's Place

It illustrates how one woman’s courage to forge ahead in a male-dominated world produced scientific work that challenged gender stereotypes and led to all-male clubs breaking their male-only rules.

Annapurna

By Arlene Blum,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Annapurna as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In August 1978, thirteen women left San Francisco for the Nepal Himalaya to make history as the first Americans—and the first women—to scale the treacherous slopes of Annapurna I, the world’s tenth highest peak. Expedition leader Arlene Blum here tells their dramatic story: the logistical problems, storms, and hazardous ice climbing; the conflicts and reconciliations within the team; the terror of avalanches that threatened to sweep away camps and climbers.

On October 15, two women and two Sherpas at last stood on the summit—but the celebration was cut short, for two days later, the two women of the second summit…


5 book lists we think you will like!

Interested in mountaineering, the Himalayas, and Mount Everest?

7,000+ authors have recommended their favorite books and what they love about them. Browse their picks for the best books about mountaineering, the Himalayas, and Mount Everest.

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