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Tocando el vacío by Joe Simpson
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Tocando el vacío (original 1988; edition 2005)

by Joe Simpson

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
2,073574,631 (4.14)70
Member:dario_martinez
Title:Tocando el vacío
Authors:Joe Simpson
Info:Ediciones Desnivel (2005), Perfect Paperback
Collections:Your library
Rating:*****
Tags:None

Work details

Touching the Void by Joe Simpson (1988)

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» See also 70 mentions

English (54)  Dutch (1)  Polish (1)  All languages (56)
Showing 1-5 of 54 (next | show all)
If you like survival stories, this is a must read. I saw the documentary first (which I'd give 5 stars - really worth watching), then read the book. Simpson isn't the most exciting writer, but the story itself is incredible, and the emotional honesty that he and Simon Yates both provide gives it power. Simpson's gradual mental and physical collapse as he tries to survive is riveting. But I think it is Yates' heroism and the impossible choice he had to make - and then live with - that will stick with me. That they were also incredibly reckless somehow makes it more interesting. I mean, they took so many risks, how could they not see this coming? Ah, to be young and stupid and invincible again. ( )
  JanetNoRules | Sep 17, 2018 |
Upper-Intermediate Early,
  ChatterMatters | Jul 17, 2018 |
“Life can deal you an amazing hand. Do you play it steady, bluff like crazy or go all in?”

Talk about a spine-chilling, knee-jerk experience. Me, describing this book? That is it. The best way to describe this book; it is an Experience. It doesn’t help that this isn’t my usual type of read, but it has been in my stacks for ages and dang it, this year I’m trying to clear these things out!

Joe Simpson and his friend Simon Yates are mountain climbers. EXTREME mountain climbers. They set out to climb a previously untested mountain range in the Andes Mountains. It was cold. It was dangerous. It was exhilarating. In the beginning of the book, the cold, the wet, the loneliness…I was left wondering what in the world these two men could possibly see fun about doing what they were doing! It just sounds miserable! But then, just like a good author should, Simpson provided the reason for me:

For the first time in my life I knew what it meant to be isolated from people and society. It was wonderfully calming and tranquil to be here. I became aware of a feeling of complete freedom-to do what I wanted to do when I wanted to, and in whatever manner. Suddenly the whole day had changed. All lethargy was swept away by an invigorating independence. We had responsibilities to no one but ourselves now, there would be no more to intrude or come to our rescue…

That quote comes from near the beginning of the book, as they are on their way up that crazy mountain. He intentionally weighs it down at the end there, doesn’t he? Come to our rescue…. Still makes me shiver.

It’s no mystery that Joe Simpson fell on their return trip down the mountain. It’s no secret he survived. He wrote this book! Knowing that shouldn’t prevent you from wanting to read this book. The fall takes mere moments in words. It’s what comes after. After; is why you need to read this book. The physical journey, the spiritual journey, the pain, and fear, and hope, and despair…these are reasons why you need to read this book. Joe Simpson, and Simon Yates, lay it all bare for the world to see. It is a moving, painful, and breath-taking journey to read. And it’s cold; very, very cold. I challenge you to read this book and not feel COLD. The things these two men go through…it’s epic. It’s an epic story of survival and a moving story of friendship and bravery not quite like anything I’ve read before. Highly recommended and shows I really should step out of my comfort zone every once in awhile!
( )
  capriciousreader | Mar 20, 2018 |
This book is harrowing, touching, and suspenseful. Amazing true story. ( )
  CherieKephart | Aug 3, 2017 |
A very tragic and unbelievably heroic story. Heroic, because the personal challenge taken went wrong, even though all risks were calculated and prepared for. ( )
  parp | Aug 29, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 54 (next | show all)
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Joe Simpsonprimary authorall editionscalculated
Bonington, ChrisForewordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
All men dream: but not equally.

Those who dream by night in the dusty
recesses of their minds wake in the day
to find that it was vanity: but the dreamers
of the day are dangerous men, for they may
act their dreams with open eyes, to make it
possible.
- T.E. Lawrence, The Seven Pillars of Wisdom
Dedication
To Simon Yates for a debt I can never repay.
And to those friends who have gone to the mountains and have not returned.
First words
I was lying in my sleeping bag, staring at the light filtering through the red and green fabric of the dome tent.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0060730552, Paperback)

Concise and yet packed with detail, Touching the Void, Joe Simpson's harrowing account of near-death in the Peruvian Andes, is a compact tour de force that wrestles with issues of bravery, friendship, physical endurance, the code of the mountains, and the will to live. Simpson dedicates the book to his climbing partner, Simon Yates, and to "those friends who have gone to the mountains and have not returned." What is it that compels certain individuals to willingly seek out the most inhospitable climate on earth? To risk their lives in an attempt to leave footprints where few or none have gone before? Simpson's vivid narrative of a dangerous climbing expedition will convince even the most die-hard couch potato that such pursuits fall within the realm of the sane. As the author struggles ever higher, readers learn of the mountain's awesome power, the beautiful--and sometimes deadly--sheets of blue glacial ice, and the accomplishment of a successful ascent. And then catastrophe: the second half of Touching the Void sees Simpson at his darkest moment. With a smashed, useless leg, he and his partner must struggle down a near-vertical face--and that's only the beginning of their troubles.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:23:33 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

The author relates his nearly fatal adventures mountaineering in the Andes, adventures that included a fall into a crevice, broken limbs, and return to safety.

(summary from another edition)

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