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Summary

WINNER OF THE GUARDIAN FIRST BOOK AWARD

Once we thought monsters lived there. In the Enlightenment we scaled them to commune with the sublime. Soon, we were racing to conquer their summits in the name of national pride.

In this ground-breaking, classic work, Robert Macfarlane takes us up into the mountains: to experience their shattering beauty, the fear and risk of adventure, and to explore the strange impulses that have for centuries lead us to the world's highest places.

©2003 Robert Macfarlane (P)2003 Robert Macfarlane

Critic reviews

The most exhilarating history of mountaineering ... a riveting read.
-- Jeremy Paxman

What listeners say about Mountains of the Mind

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A peak experience

Every time I read (or listen to) one of Robert Macfarlane’s books I think it’s my favourite of his, and this is no exception. If you haven’t read him yet, I pity and envy you, and this is as good a place to start as any - fascinating, beautifully-written, gripping, inspiring, and constantly thought-provoking. Of course, my opinion here is utterly biased by my love of Macfarlane’s writing, but that is also my highest praise. Enjoy the view.

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All things mountain

A history of our fascination indeed with great stories of explorers intertwined - I'm certainly left more fascinated and cannot wait to visit Mont Blanc this summer

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Superb

One of the best books I've ever read about mountaineering. A thoughtful, wise, philosophical look at an ostensibly strange activity.