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Explorers of the Nile: The Triumph and Tragedy of a Great Victorian Adventure
Explorers of the Nile: The Triumph and Tragedy of a Great Victorian Adventure
by Tim Jeal
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £19.68

5.0 out of 5 stars spears and malaria, 20 Sep 2014
I read Jeal's Livingstone a few years ago and then his biography of Stanley when it came out. Both books were well written and well researched. I had some concern with this book that Jeal may just regurgitate old ground. I'm pleased to say this was not the case. Of course, Livingstone and Stanley were both significant players in the exploration of Africa and the source of the Nile. However, Jeal brings together all the leading characters in a well flowing and very readable book.

I would thoroughly recommend this book.


Tournament Of Shadows: The Great Game and the Race for Empire in Asia
Tournament Of Shadows: The Great Game and the Race for Empire in Asia
by Karl E. Meyer
Edition: Paperback
Price: £22.60

5.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating, 20 Sep 2014
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Absolutely fascinating book, second only to Peter Hopkirk's 'The Great Game'. In some areas this goes into greater detail than Hopkirk's classic and this is good. I really enjoyed reading this well researched and well written book. I just felt that Hopkirk's writing style flowed a little better for the reader.


Bayonets to Lhasa: The first full account of the British invasion of Tibet in 1904
Bayonets to Lhasa: The first full account of the British invasion of Tibet in 1904
by Peter Fleming
Edition: Hardcover

4.0 out of 5 stars How could they have known, 20 Sep 2014
This is a fascinating story of empire. How easy it is to invent a reason to invade on spurious grounds. I don't suppose this is unusual as has been seen through history right up to the modern day. However, Sir Francis Younghusband took advantage of his friend Lord Curzon to hoodwink him into supporting an invasion into Tibet. A peaceful nation that only wanted to be left alone and to carry on untarnished by external influences. An interesting story, and indeed Younghusband was an interesting man too, but not exactly the finest hour in British history. Paranoia about Russian influence and invasion into the jewel in the British crown, that was India, led to continual spooking of the Russian threat. This was known as The Great Game and was the Cold War of a century earlier.

The book is written well and gives some interesting detail, although sometimes gets a little bit stuck. A fascinating piece of history in a truly fascinating country, with a very alien culture.


Conquistadors of the Useless
Conquistadors of the Useless
by Lionel Terray
Edition: Paperback
Price: £10.90

5.0 out of 5 stars Nothing useless about Terray, 20 Sep 2014
I knew the name well and the era, but little of the man himself. This book has certainly cleared that up. It is well written and maintains a constant tempo. Lionel Terray was a leading climber in the Alps and further afield and is associated with a number of famous climbs, such as Annapurna and a number of famous climbers, such as Gaston Rebuffat. What a shame his life should end at such a young age. One can't help but wonder how his life would have panned out had it not been cut short.


The Khyber Pass: A History of Empire and Invasion
The Khyber Pass: A History of Empire and Invasion
by Paddy Docherty
Edition: Hardcover

4.0 out of 5 stars The Khyber hourglass, 20 Sep 2014
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You'd never expect so much history to have squeezed through the narrow geological defile known as the Khyber Pass. Paddy Docherty takes the reader through more than two thousand years of history and finishes with his own personal arrival in Kabul. Most will have heard of some of the great empires that made their way east through central asia as they expanded their domains, but there are others written about that are not so immediately recognisable. The author links the periods and empires and explains the machinations leading to rise and subsequent fall of each empire. A fascinating read.


Menlove: Life of John Menlove Edwards
Menlove: Life of John Menlove Edwards
by Jim Perrin
Edition: Paperback
Price: £7.07

4.0 out of 5 stars but unlike other great climbers he never progressed to alpinism, 20 Sep 2014
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One of the early protagonists in the development of rock climbing in Britain. Perrin tells the story of a troubled soul, who suffered mental health problems for much of his life, culminating in his suicide. Menlove Edwards certainly made his name rock climbing and he climbed with some of the greats of his period including Colin Kirkus, but unlike other great climbers he never progressed to alpinism. This book has brought one of our pioneers out of obscurity.


Unjustifiable Risk?: The Story of British Climbing
Unjustifiable Risk?: The Story of British Climbing
by Simon Thompson
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £20.00

5.0 out of 5 stars Great book, which I really enjoyed, 20 Sep 2014
Great book, which I really enjoyed. I wasn't quite sure what I expected from it when I started, but what I found was a clear, flowing and informative account of British interest, progress and development in mountaineering. This isn't a book giving blow by blow accounts of climbing lists of mountains and the level of technical information is limited. This makes it as enjoyable for non-climbers as it is for climbers. Highly recommended


THE GILGIT GAME: THE EXPLORERS OF THE WESTERN HIMALAYAS 1865-95.
THE GILGIT GAME: THE EXPLORERS OF THE WESTERN HIMALAYAS 1865-95.
by John. Keay
Edition: Hardcover

5.0 out of 5 stars Great book telling the story of some of those men ..., 14 Sep 2014
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Great book telling the story of some of those men who made their way through the dangerous and mountainous country on the northwest frontier.


Churchill's First War: Young Winston and the Fight Against the Taliban
Churchill's First War: Young Winston and the Fight Against the Taliban
by Con Coughlin
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £7.94

5.0 out of 5 stars Easy read and very informative, 14 Sep 2014
Easy read and very informative. This book gives a clear view of events at Malakand, and an interesting insight into the character of one of the greatest people England has known. The reader is quickly led through the story and get transported to the scene over a hundred years ago. Connections were clearly instrumental in creating this important opportunity for Winston Churchill and there was certainly plenty of lobbying and networking going on behind the scenes, and sometimes more overtly too.

Great read, well written and recommended to others.


Feeding the Rat: Profile of a Climber - Mo Anthoine
Feeding the Rat: Profile of a Climber - Mo Anthoine
by Al Alvarez
Edition: Hardcover

5.0 out of 5 stars written in easy flowing prose, 14 Sep 2014
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A short book, written in easy flowing prose, this is the story of Mo Antoine. A leading mountaineer of his day, but without the acclaim of others such as Chris Bonington and Doug Scott. It's a lovely book written with clear affection by the author who was a friend and sometime climbing partner of Mo.


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