The book is reflective of the time in which it was written and evokes a feeling of an era long gone. Therein lies its charm. Nostalgia buffs will love it, as will those readers looking to consume anything about Everest. It will not disappoint, though the book is not about the climb to the summit in the strictest sense. The book chronicles in great detail the author's journey to Everest, as well as his personal experiences and observations while at Everest, waiting to break the story of the end result of the historic climb to the summit. It also chronicles the cloak and dagger methodology which he employed in order maintain exclusivity for The London Times.
It should be noted in the interest of clarity and to avoid confusion, that times do indeed change. The author, James Morris, underwent a gender change subsequent to the original 1958 publication of this book. When the book was released again, however, the publisher did so under the name which the author had since adopted, Jan Morris. James or Jan, the author is a hell of a writer, and the book is well worth reading.