- Also check our best rated Biography reviews
No Picnic on Mount Kenya: A Daring Escape, a Perilous Climb Paperback – 1 Mar 2005
Customers who viewed this item also viewed
What other items do customers buy after viewing this item?
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
"A tale worth reading... Mr. Benuzzi's paradoxical mixture of pride and self-mocking humility is attractive; his courage is amazing; his story dramatic." - The New York Times"
About the Author
Felice Benuzzi was born in Vienna to a family of mountaineers. He was an accomplished swimmer who represented Italy in several international meets from 1933 to 1935. He was also a graduate of law school. In 1938 he entered the Colonial Service and began serving abroad, where he was captured and imprisoned in a POW camp at the foot of Mount Kenya. Benuzzi managed to escape from the camp and immediately began writing. He then rejoined the service while continuing to write and, while traveling all over the world, became more accomplished in both professions. Felice Benuzzi passed away in 1988.
Top customer reviews
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
`No Picnic on Mount Kenya' tells the story of Benuzzi and two fellow prisoners, from their planning and preparation, through absconding and approaching the mountain, then the climbing, to their return to break back into prison. This involved assembling equipment and supplies as for any expedition, but for them it meant manufacturing ice-axes and crampons, stealing rope, hoarding food, fabricating cooking equipment, acquiring alcohol fuel from the camp hospital and borrowing items from other prisoners. Also they had to gather information on possible lines of ascent which in their case included use of a label depicting Mount Kenya from a tin of meat and vegetable rations as well as details copied from publications in camp.
Felice Benuzzi has written the book with a blend of humour and humility, but it is a tale of earnest endeavour and considerable courage. Climbing involved advances and retreats, including being driven back by a blizzard on Bation, and hunger and illness added to the difficulties and dangers - but the men persevered. Tension is interminable throughout the valiant venture, and this factual tale is as exciting as any far fetched fictional adventure. The intrepid trio of prisoners of war aimed high, they played their game - they escaped from the drudgery of incarceration. Mount Kenya' main summit may have beyond them, but they bagged the subsidiary summit of Point Lenana at over 16,000 feet - a truly remarkable achievement exemplifying escapism at the heart of mountaineering. In climbers' language, `epic' is an appropriate epithet for the audacious attempt by Benuzzi and his companions on Africa's second highest peak - `No Picnic on Mount Kenya' makes an exhilarating and illuminating story - it is heroic mountain adventure.
The story is well and humbly told. I have been on the mountain several times and can testify that the author evokes the spirit of the place very well.
Benuzzi and his companions realised that escape to the nearest neutral country - Mozamabique - would be impractical, but despondent of prison camp life, they decided to escape anyway - but instead climb one of Africa's highest mountains.
The story of how they made home-made climbing equipment under the noses of the prison guards is as exciting as the story of their daring climb itself.
As well as the British and the hazards of the mountain, they also had elephants, leopards and rhinos to contend with.
A tremendous tale of adventure and determination against all the odds. Highly recommended to anyone interested in either escape stories or mountaineering.
My brother, a former Australian ambassador to Italy is working on a biography of Benuzzi
which is why I bought the "Mount Kenya" book.
Would you like to see more reviews about this item?
Most recent customer reviews