Into Thin Air by Jon Krakauer

Into Thin Air

A bank of clouds was assembling on the not-so-distant horizon, but journalist-mountaineer Jon Krakauer, standing on the summit of Mt. Everest, saw nothing that "suggested that a murderous storm was bearing down." He was wrong. The storm, which claimed five lives and left countless more--including Krakauer's--in guilt-ridden disarray, would also provide the impetus for Into Thin Air, Krakauer's epic account of the May 1996 disaster.

Details Into Thin Air

TitleInto Thin Air
Release DateOct 19th, 1999
PublisherAnchor Books
GenreNonfiction, Adventure, Autobiography, Memoir, Travel, Biography, History

Reviews Into Thin Air

  • Cassy
    Life got you down? Then join us on a guided expedition led by Capital Idiocy Inc. as we climb to... The Summit of MOUNT EVEREST For the bargain price of $65,000,[1] we will take you on the adventure of a lifetime full of scenic views,[2] camaraderie,[3] and athleticism.[4]Worried that you lack the necessary climbing experience? Don’t be discouraged![5] While Mount Everest is the tallest mountain in the world, it is not the most technically chal...
  • karen
    RELEASE THE KRAKAUER!!!!seriously, it is time to just raze everest and be done with it already. i mean, it's big and impressive but it is just taking up all this room and killing people so why do we even need it anymore?? can't we just get over it? really, i think it has reached its peak and is all downhill from here.shameless punning this started out as an article that KRAKAUER was asked to write for outside magazine about the commercia...
  • Brigette
    I recently attended the Banff mountain film festival in Canada. One of the key speakers was Simone Moro, the close friend of Anatoli Boukreev, the climber who was killed in an avalanche several years ago on Annapurna and whom Krakauer pretty much vilifies in this book as not having done enough to save the lives of those caught in the blizzard on Mount Everest in May of 1996. Needless to say, the vibe in the room was chilly whenever the subject of...
  • Michelle
    This is not a review. I don’t feel like writing a review for this book, but I feel like I should at least say something about it because I did enjoy it. I mean, it did make me utter “Jesus Christ” out loud more than one time, and I don’t often talk to myself while I am reading a book.(I almost want to post a picture of a LOLcat with a caption that says “This buk wuz gud,” but I don’t have one.)So…These are a few things I learned f...
  • Kelly (and the Book Boar)
    Find all of my reviews at: “Everest has always been a magnet for kooks, publicity seekers, hopeless romantics, and others with a shaky hold on reality.” Welcome to one of Kelly’s creepy obsessions! (Advance apologies - this might get rambly.) Okay, so I’m totally obsessed with all things Everest and CAN. NOT. WAIT. to see the movie that details the same tragic events which are covered in this book (even...
  • Michael
    Utterly harrowing and propulsive. I could not put this book down. This is another book that details people's misguided quests to conquer nature--to see nature as something to be conquered. It's also another great cold-weather read, to make you realize that, really, it's not so cold out after all.
  • Maxwell
    I'll be the first to admit that I'm not the biggest fan of non-fiction. I prefer to listen to podcasts or interviews, rather than read straight-up non-fiction about a certain topic. And as someone who isn't particularly interested in climbing or sports in general, this wouldn't be a book that I'd normally read. But I'm so glad that I did.It definitely reads more like a memoir, since the author was present for the events of the story. That made it...
  • Petra X
    Into Thin Air or Injustice (of many kinds) on the Mountain.Until almost the end this book was exactly as I expected it to be with just one exception. It was the story of a journalist climbing Mount Everest both as a journalist and as a mountaineer. Ideal getting paid to do your hobby! It was interesting because Krakauer is a damn good writer and because its fascinating to see the details of how the mountain is climbed. Its also disappointing beca...
  • Katie
    What a read to start 2018! I enjoyed the majority of this, and I'll admit I fell down a bit of a black hole when it came to the controversy behind Krakauer's perspective. Review will be up tomorrow! :)
  • Steve
    Note to self: take climbing Everest off bucket list.
  • Arah-Lynda
    Several authors and editors I respect counseled me not to write the book as quickly as I did; they urged me to wait two or three years and put some distance between me and the expedition in order to gain some crucial perspective. Their advice was sound, but in the end I ignored it- mostly because what happened on the mountain was gnawing my guts out. I thought that writing the book might purge Everest from my life. It hasn’t of course. But it i...
  • Paul Bryant
    This is the most defaced book I ever read. It must have been used in a school at one point. Up to page 69 there are two different people highlighting passages in pink and green but then in the margins, suddenly there is this:Katie is Eric’s fave, to bad for him, he is silly, I hope he’s a good kisserAnd then on page 77, which otherwise would be blank:This is the most boring book I have ever read, I swear if anyone read this book by choice the...
  • Jonathan Ashleigh
    This book was well told. At times I felt oxygen deprived and often this made me unaware of tragedy. I am not a huge fan of non-fiction but this is worth a read.
  • Scott
    Does your dream holiday involve spending north of fifty grand to risk a fatal aneurysm, walk past the dead bodies of weaker adventurers who’ve come before you and possibly lose your fingers, toes and nose, if not your life? If so, then step right up to climb Mount Everest!Seriously though, If you’ve ever thought you might like to climb Everest, read this book. If you still want to attempt the highest mountain in the world after finishing Into...
  • Duane
    Jon Krakauer standing on the summit of Mt. Everest."Straddling the top of the world, one foot in China and the other in Nepal, I cleared the ice out of my oxygen mask, hunched a shoulder against the wind, and stared down into the vastness of Tibet".You have heard the saying, "truth is stranger than fiction". In this case truth is more frightening, more compelling than fiction. This is the first hand account of the 1996 tragedy on Mt. Everest that...
  • Kim
    Read within the span of 10 hours. This is not a hard read, well, if you take out the subject matter. I picked this up because 'Into the Wild' has been out or on hold for months at the library so I thought I'd at least get a feel for Jon Krakauer's writing style. I also have to admit that it wasn't the writing style that sold me, not that it isn't well done, but usually I'm not drawn to 'personal accounts' or non-fiction, in general, unless it is ...
  • Caroline
    ***NO SPOILERS*** May 10, 1996 was a very, very bad day to be climbing to “the roof of the world.” On that day, journalist and avid mountain climber Jon Krakauer reached the summit of Mt. Everest with a group as part of a guided expedition. He was on assignment for “Outside” magazine and was one of the few in his group to survive this expedition after a ferocious storm hit out of the blue. Into Thin Air is as much a meticulous detailing o...
  • Tatiana
    If Krakauer's intention was to kill all of our romantic ideas about mountain climbing with this book, he undoubtedly succeeded. Whatever idealistic notions of bravery, athleticism, adventure, and brotherhood I had about this "sport", are now gone forever.What Krakauer delivers instead is a very tough picture of people who are ready to risk their lives and lives of those around them (guides, Sherpas, rescue workers) for the purpose of satisfying s...
  • Ginger
    I absolutely loved this!! I had a feeling that I would due to my personal experience hiking and climbing in the Pacific Northwest region."Why did you want to climb Mount Everest?"This question was asked of George Leigh Mallory, a Himalayan mountain climber in 1921.And his answer was,"Because it’s there."This might not make sense to someone who’s not into this sport or adventure, but to me, I get it.Why do I test myself on grueling 4500’ ele...
  • Natalie Vellacott
    This is probably the best climbing book I have read despite the controversy surrounding some aspects. It was as enthralling as books like Endurance and as readable. I was with the author on the mountain and felt the terrible pain of the losses they endured, the guilt of the survivors and the many "what ifs" after the event.The author relays his personal experiences climbing Everest in 1996 with a number of groups. This was the tragic year when ma...
  • Red Panda
    I'm just going to come out and say it: I just don't get it.Even after reading this book, I just cannot understand why anybody would want to climb Everest. If nobody had ever done it before, I could understand it from the perspective of exploration and new discoveries, but this is a mountain that has now been climbed so often it has a serious garbage problem. From Jon Krakauer's descriptions in this book, it actually sounds like a bit of a shithol...
  • Brandon
    About a year ago, I read a book called Blind Descent: The Quest to Discover the Deepest Place on Earth which was basically all about finding the basement of the earth. A group of cave divers descended into a seemingly bottomless cave full of all sorts of unknown danger. For some reason after finishing it, I didn’t return to any exploration books even though this tale fascinated me. It wasn’t until recently when I listened to an episode of Kev...
  • Greg
    I had no idea what shelf to put this on. So I made up a new one, lacking the number of characters needed, this shelf should be called, true stories about things I would never do or try to do. But maybe that is a lie. Like Krakauer I too have had a near death experience while engaged in 'climbing', like the doomed people in this book, my own life was possibly endangered by faulty decisions made by those who are being paid to know better. My own ex...
  • Jill Hutchinson
    I started this year with one fantastic book. Let me say that you do not have to be interested in mountain climbing to enjoy this true story of the 1996 tragedy on Mount Everest, written by one who was there. It is an amazing story and will have you still asking the question "why does man climb mountains". Someone once said "because they are there" but that really isn't the answer. I have put a quote by a famous mountaineer at the end of this revi...
  • Randy
    Jon Krakauer is a student of extreme behaviors and those who engage in them, and he happened to be on Mt. Everest during the notorious May 10-11, 1996, disaster. A series of seemingly minor mishaps, oversights, and questionable decisions kept climbers moving up the mountain hours later than any reasonable turnaround time. At 29,000 feet, that would have been bad enough given cold, hypoxia, and a finite supply of supplemental oxygen, but an unexpe...
  • Alisa
    I live in Seattle and on a reasonably clear day Mount Rainier, at 14,000+ feet, graces the skyline with her majestic beauty and mystique. Sometimes it looks like you can reach out and touch it. It has an undeniable allure. There are lots and lots of climbers up there every year, and it is a highly desirable North American peak for people to scale that still offers challenge and excitement and danger. High altitude mountain climbing is not for the...
  • Alissa Patrick
    This book was insane. No way in hell. These people are nuts.
  • Algernon
    My 5 star rating reflects both the quality of the book and a lifetime passion for mountains. I've devoured in the past all books and magazine articles I could find, following climbers from Cerro Torres to Eiger or Matterhorn, Trango Towers, Kilimanjaro or McKinley. The Jewels in the Crown have always been the Himalayan peaks, with their musical names promising adventure and fame to the bold and determined climber: Nanga Parbat, Makalu, Annapurna,...
  • Viv JM
    Unfortunately, the sort of individual who is programmed to ignore personal distress and keep pushing for the top is frequently programmed to disregard signs of grave and imminent danger as well. This forms the nub of a dilemma that every Everest climber eventually comes up against: in order to succeed you must be exceedingly driven, but if you're too driven you're likely to die. Above 26,000 feet, moreover, the line between appropriate zeal and r...