There it is. Stunning isn’t it? One false move…one ill-timed breath…and you’re toast because up here, you are only a moment away from total oblivion. Chomolungma is in your sites….better known as
That’s right! It’s the return of the “choose your own adventure” books! You remember those, right? (If not, I suggest you get thee to your local bookstore or library and bone up on the subject because really, they are full of nail-biting fun.) This time around, the folks behind The Worst- Case Scenario series REALLY bring the adventure to life. Usually the original books would take you on a journey into space, time or some world of fantasy far far away…and while I love my fantasy worlds as much as the next reader, the spin put on this particular adventure is what gives it that little something more.
What’s that magic ingredient? Simple. It’s a combination of the probable real-life adventure they chose and the way in which the outcomes were created. First things first though…let’s talk about the adventure. I for one will never be summiting Everest in real life though it sounds rather wonderful…at least the summiting part. I’m afraid I probably wouldn’t make the incredible journey that it truly is and boy is it a journey! Seriously. Did you know it takes about TWO MONTHS to actually summit? No lie. The number of times you have to climb to Camp I and then back down. Climb to Camp 2 and then back down. Climb to Camp 1 and overnight, then climb back down. It’s no wonder it’s seen as the adventure of a lifetime. Of course all of that climbing back and forth does have it’s purpose….to acclimate the body to the thinner air found in the region…but still, utter dedication is needed to see it through. What’s that? Oh, you want to know how I know this to be the case….I see. Can’t just take me at my word, right? O_o Just kidding…
The reason for my “knowledgeable” speech on this topic is not purely coincidental. Despite having seen an Everest program on television or two and visiting the Everest ride at Disney's Animal Kingdom (LOVE that ride) with it's authentic replication of an actual climb (complete with gear, map...missing team members...O_O), they are not the source of my information. Where is comes from is experience….and not personal either (as I said…not climbing this monster peak myself, thank you very much…but congrats to those that do). When creating this book and the very real outcomes, the authors consulted a real live mountaineer, Mr. David Morton, thus adding that extra depth and insight found throughout the text. Can you believe he’s submitted Everest five times? Yep…FIVE. You’ll feel like you’re right there with your fellow teammates (which is the point of course, hence the “choose YOUR own” part of the adventure) as you make your way through the Namache Bazaar and sample its regional flavor. Catch your breath as you take in the harsh beauty of The Khumbu Icefall and try to avoid falling ice blocks in the afternoon sun. It’s all there for you to experience…in the comfort of your home.
Let’s not forget about the illustrations throughout the book lending you a visual guide to your literary adventure to the top of the world. In striking black and white, the illustrator brings to life the vivid events and images being described in the text. Whether you’re simply climbing one of the foothills on the way to Base Camp or teetering on a ladder as you cross a crevasse, your imagination takes you part of the way but the pictures provided will complete the journey there. Remember…don’t look down. O_O
I can’t take all the credit there though…the authors and climbing consultant have got your back. In the “welcome” section of the book you are introduced to not only your climbing team and the challenge that awaits you, but you’re also alerted to the special Expedition File included at book’s end. This is no ordinary “end of book” feature though. This is a file meant to PREPARE you for the journey giving you tidbits of information and hints you will need to make your way through the perilous choices ahead….and trust me there are a few that really give you pause. Take my advice, or rather the advice of your team and READ THE FILE. It could mean the difference between life…and….something far less stunning.
It’s an adventure in the making and a learning experience all in one. What’s not to love about that? Review copy received courtesy of Lara at Chronicle Books. (THANKS!) For more information on this title as well as their full catalog, visit there website, blog, Facebook page, or follow along on Twitter (1 or 2). For more information on The Worst-Case Scenario junior series, check out this website…and for more on the NEW Adventure series check out this one, for videos, downloads, upcoming titles (of which one is already listed…yay!) and more.
Until next time…happy reading!