Psychovertical

Psychovertical

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Psychovertical is the story of what happens to a nice lower-class kid with dyslexia who gains control over his circumstances by clinging to giant stone faces.
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Psychovertical is the story of what happens to a nice lower-class kid with dyslexia who gains control over his circumstances by clinging to giant stone faces, thousands of feet in the air, for days at a time. In this case, Kirkpatrick uses his 12-day solo climb of the Reticent Wall on California's El Capitan as the experience that helps him understand how growing up poor and struggling with dyslexia and low self-confidence set him on a path of extreme adventure.

Kirkpatrick's writing is gripping and highly entertaining -- even non-climbers will enjoy his raw intensity, gallows humour, and honest, self-deprecating storytelling style. This book is a Boardman-Tasker Prize winner, which is recognition given for outstanding mountaineering literature. From the judges' remarks:

“The book is very cleverly structured....The cuts from scene to scene and climb to climb work wonderfully well -- a sort of mountaineering Day of The Jackal -- as Kirkpatrick comes closer and closer to his nemesis on Reticent Wall. And it is this climb, the running narrative of the book, that grips the most: 14 pitches of aid climbing, unrelieved by conversation with a partner other than himself, should by rights be boring. But it grips the heart further and further.”

Specifications

  • Format: Paperback
  • Dimensions: 288 pages, 15.24 x 2.29 x 22.61 cm
  • Published: Jan 1, 2012
  • Publisher: The Mountaineers Books
  • Language: English
  • Item weight: 476 g

About the Author

ANDY KIRKPATRICK has a reputation for seeking out routes where the danger is real and the return is questionable, pushing himself on some of the hardest walls and faces in the Alps and beyond. He was born and raised on a council estate in Hull, one of the UK's flattest cities, and suffered from severe dyslexia, which went undiagnosed until he was 19. Thriving on this apparent adversity, Andy transformed himself into one of the world's most driven and accomplished climbers and an award-winning writer. In 2001 he undertook a 12-day solo ascent of the Reticent Wall on El Capitan, one of the hardest solo climbs in the world. This climb was the central theme of his first book Psychovertical, which won the 2008 Boardman Tasker Prize for Mountain Literature. Cold Wars is his second book. Andy lives in Sheffield with his two children. Learn more at his website, andy-kirkpatrick.com

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