on 11 January 2002
Jim Crumley's fierce commitment to mountain country and its conservation is undeniable, but his style of writing and his world view are rather a matter of taste. While a good number of people whose judgement I respect think Jim is something like a new John Muir, for myself I find his striving for aesthetic or even poetic effect is too often just laborious rather than fluently successful; sometimes meaning dissolves on close scrutiny. Similarly, his conservation arguments may be so pure as to command respect, but they are largely so uncompromising as to be utterly unworkable in any political reality short of an enlightened dictatorship under J.Crumley, and I find rather a smack of bitterness and misanthropy within them. We have to live together on this earth as well as living with the earth.
But I'd encourage anyone with a feeling for mountain country to read this, and his other related titles on Glen Coe and the Cairngorms, to see how they relate to Jim's stern advocacy.