________________ CM . . . . Volume XVIII Number 28 . . . . March 23, 2012


The Climb. (Everest Book Two).

Gordon Korman.
New York, NY: Scholastic (Distributed in Canada by Scholastic Canada), 2002.
151 pp., pbk., $6.99.
ISBN 978-0-545-39233-4.

Grades 3-7 / Ages 8-12.

Review by Tanya Boudreau.

*** /4



SummitQuest’s next foray onto the shanks of Everest was a climb to Camp One for a two-day acclimatization stay.

If boredom had been an annoyance at Base Camp, here at 19,500 feet it was a full-fledged epidemic. There was absolutely nothing to do except read and melt snow into drinking water Perry looked into the pot. “The fire’s broken,” he complained, stirring a mound of slush that seemed determined to stay slush forever.

Sneezy laughed. “Fire burns cooler at altitude. Wait till Camp Four. You can spend a whole night trying to make a cup of soup.”

Tilt headed for the tent flap. “I’m not thirsty.”

The cameraman grabbed him by the arm. “If you get dehydrated on Everest, you’re dead. Make yourself comfortable. We’re going to be here a long time.”

The Climb, the second book in the “Everest” series, takes the SummitQuest team to Nepal. The sights and sounds Korman describes on the streets are just as detailed as the ones he describes in the mountains. Cap Cicero, an experienced mountaineer, is leading four teenage Alpinists up to the top of Mount Everest. One of them might break the world record and become the youngest person to reach the summit, but at what cost? Before the team starts climbing the mountain, 15-year-old Sammi Moon collides with a yak. Thirteen-year-old Dominic Alexis develops HAPE (high altitude pulmonary edema - It’s like being dead, he thinks) before he reaches Base Camp. Perry Noonan feels like he’s being forced to climb because his rich uncle (the president of Summit Athletic) wants him on the team, and 14-year-old Norman ‘Tilt’ Crowley is climbing for the fame and the glory. It’s Tilt’s need to win at all costs that may put the expedition in danger. His emails to the media contain rumors and innuendoes that cause the Nepal government to grow concerned about Cicero’s sanity and Dominic’s safety.

      This second book in Korman’s adventure trilogy contains more danger and humour than the first book. As the group acclimatizes at the different Base Camps, they experience physical and mental challenges, but they use their skills and courage to work through fatigue and dangerous conditions. Just as in the first book, The Contest, there is a rescue, but in this case, the risks and sacrifices are greater. Humour comes into play when two climbers from another team joke about a ‘yeti’ during a rest period at a base camp. Although there are no interviews in this book between the doctor on the team and the teenagers, the cameraman’s behind-the-scene reports include details about the scenery and the altitude in the mountain. Readers interested in outdoor adventure stories may want to give this series a try.


Tanya Boudreau is a librarian with the Cold Lake Public Library in Cold Lake, AB.

To comment on this title or this review, send mail to cm@umanitoba.ca.

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