Touching the Void, Hardback Book
4.5 out of 5 (2 ratings)


This book is an illustrated account of the ascent of the west face of the 21,000ft peak, Siula Grande, in the Peruvian Andes.

The author and his climbing partner, Simon Yates, achieved the summit in June 1985 before disaster struck.

A few days later, Yates staggered into base camp, exhausted and frostbitten, to tell their non-climbing companion that Joe was dead.

For three days Simon Yates, believing that he had caused his friend's death, suffered torment and guilt.

However, a cry in the night led them to Joe, badly injured and delirious, crawling through the snow.

Far from causing his friend's death, Simon had paradoxically saved his life when he cut the rope.

What happened and how they dealt with the resulting psychological trauma is the subject of this book.


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Showing 1 - 2 of 2 reviews.

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A riveting and nearly unbelievable true story of endurance. Two British mountain climbers struggle to descend a Peruvian peak in the face of ever-worsening catastrophe. This book was the basis for a recent documentary by the same title.

Review by

In 1985, Joe Simpson and a friend, Simon, were climbing a mountain in the Andes. Shortly after reaching the summit, Joe fell and broke his leg. Amazingly, he made it back down. The first chapter was just build up to the climb, so it was a little bit slower for me, but starting with chapter 2, it picked up. It picked up even a little more almost half-way through when Joe fell. There were portions of the book told from Simon's point of view, as well, so we also got to find out what Simon was thinking at times. It's not a long book and it kept me wanting to read to see how Joe would get down and the consequences of the fall.

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