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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A dedication to the man behind the climbing famous, 1 Dec 2003
By 
J. King (London, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Feeding the Rat: A Climber's Life on the Edge (Paperback)
This extraordinary book by self proclaimed non-climber Al Alvarez captures the life of one of the Birtish climbing community's best know but non-famous charactors. Mo Anthoine's life through the great climbing era of the 60's and 70's is described in beautifully vivid detail, captured like few climbing authors ever have. From Mo's discovery of climbing in his teens and subsequent hitch hike to New Zealand on £35, to his long and successful business association with Jo Brown; from great Himalayan adventures with Scott and Bonnington to Hollywood film and TV stunt double, Alvarez records the wit, anarchism, generosity, physical power and inner strength of a man driven to 'feeding the rat' like few others.
This new edition is extended with an epilogue that records the untimely death of a man who brought life and humour to British climbing. I never knew him. Once I'd finshed the book I felt like I did and that I was going to miss him too.
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars heroic antihero, 29 Aug 2006
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This review is from: Feeding the Rat: A Climber's Life on the Edge (Paperback)
This subtle and exquisitely well-written memoir of one of the most fascinating characters from the community of British climbing deserves the widest acclaim. Forget your Joe Simpsons and Chris Boningtons - Mo Anthoine was the real thing, doing the sport for the love of it, deflating the pretensions of the pompous, climbing with the best, never boasting or bullshitting or giving in to the clouds of gloom other writers like to hang around the scene, just laughing all the way. Alvarez does him justice, gets right to the heart of the man, and in doing so, to the heart of the sport itself. It reminds me of that last scene in The Wild Bunch - the old-timer and the grizzled survivor sitting there outside the stockade roaring with laughter. In its understated way, it's one of the classics of mountain literature. And unlike Joe Simpson, Alvarez sure can write..!
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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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5.0 out of 5 stars Why people climb, 8 Oct 2013
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This review is from: Feeding the Rat: A Climber's Life on the Edge (Paperback)
A book that observes the best, most interesting bits of the author's friend and fellow climber, Mo. My favourite quotes from the book:

"That's why I like feeding the rat. It's a sort of annual check-up on myself. The rat is you, really. It's the other you, and it's being fed by the you you think you really are."

"But to snuff it without knowing who you are and what you're capable of, I can't think of anything sadder than that."
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4.0 out of 5 stars One of the classic climbing books, 15 Jun 2010
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C. Hammick (Cornwall, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Feeding the Rat: A Climber's Life on the Edge (Paperback)
This is a great and dare I say 'classic' British climbing book. In today's world where celebrity culture is king, it is refreshing to read a true story about one of the UK's great, yet, modest and relatively unknown climbers. Mo Anthoine was one of the characters of the British climbing scene in the 1960s, 1970s and into the 1980s. This book is a simple story, well told and easy to read. There are no pretentsions, so common in modern mountain literature, and it is better for it. Worthwhile.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Armchair climbing must, 11 Oct 2014
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This review is from: Feeding the Rat: A Climber's Life on the Edge (Paperback)
Interesting read
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 12 Oct 2014
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This review is from: Feeding the Rat: A Climber's Life on the Edge (Paperback)
A 'must' read
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Feeding the Rat: A Climber's Life on the Edge
Feeding the Rat: A Climber's Life on the Edge by Al Alvarez (Paperback - 7 July 2003)
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