1 of 6 people found the following review helpful
Not great literature but a gripping read.
, 1 Nov. 1999
This review is from: Freefall (Paperback)
Where does insanity end and madness begin? To voluntarily fling yourself out of an aeroplane not just once but time after time; To submit yourself to the physical and mental torture that is required of applicants to the SAS; To dream of stepping out into space from the basket of a balloon at the edge of the earths atmosphere in order to "boldly go" where no sane man has gone before. To do, or to desire to do, all these things and more does in my,somewhat sheltered experience of life, raise at least a presumption of madness. And so it comes as no real surprise that Tom Read having lived life to the very edge, finally toppled headlong off his proverbial trolley. Many men (and women) undertake very brave and dangerous pursuits for all manner of reasons. Some are eccentric pioneers and some are inveterate adventurers. Some do it for personal reasons and some for their Queen and Country. Tom Read probably did it for all those reasons and more, and the story he tells,which describes his many and varied death defying experiences along a parallel track which also recounts his descent into mental mincemeat is absorbing and gripping stuff. Great literature it 'aint but this book was written by Tom at a time when he was only just emerging from his "illness" and given that the SAS probably do not count writing skills as a number one priority, this book is a remarkable achievement. He may have been a complete nutter to begin with but by the end of this book you really do care about the man and I for one found it hard to put down.
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