- Hardcover: 320 pages
- Publisher: Baton Wicks Publications (May 2002)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1898573247
- ISBN-13: 978-1898573241
- Product Dimensions: 18.2 x 2.9 x 24.8 cm
- Shipping Weight: 898 g
- Average Customer Review: 1 customer review
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #1,521,415 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
The Evidence of Things Not Seen: A Mountaineer's Tale Hardcover – May 2002
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'A big, quiet book that resonated beyond the clamour of ego and conquest.' (Dermot Somers, Judge, Banff Mountain Festival of Literature and Culture). 'This autobiography captures the huge scope of Murray's extraordinary life - I'd wager that many climbers under thirty have read little of Murray, seeing him as a remote figure from the past. This book has changed all that and made him relevant and current.' (Ed Douglas, Climber Magazine). 'Would it live up to expectations? The answer is a resounding yes. Murray's words of optimism, insight and humility flow from each page, No inflated ego, no cynicism, no backbiting - and no false modesty either.' (Jim Curran, High). 'Through the concise and page-turning war days we learn that the author spent two years scribing Mountaineering in Scotland on toilet paper. The Gestapo found the then manuscript, interrogated Murray and then destroyed it, believing it was coded intelligence information. Over the next two years Murray describes how he forced himself to rewrite the book.' (Jonathan Waterman, American Alpine Journal). 'Bill Murray married a poet and the poetic sensibility which so often gives his work its depth is on display here. Its prose enhanced by pages of sumptuous photographs, valuable artefacts of climbing history in themselves, The Evidence of Things Not Seen is the memorial Murray deserves. Like a Highland sunset, his talent flared in glory one final time.' (David Rose, The Guardian).
About the Author
W.H. Murray was born in Liverpool in 1913. Two years later his father was killed at Gallipoli, so his family moved back to Glasgow where Murray spent his childhood, school and college years before beginning a career in banking. He made his first climbs in 1934 and later joined a talented group of climbers in the Junior Mountaineering Club of Scotland. Murray describes how they strove to regain the dynamism of the early Scottish climbing that had been lost in the trauma of the Great War. After surviving long periods as a prisoner of war, attributed by some to his study of philosophy, Murray returned to mountaineering and later took part in key Himalayan expeditions of the 1950s. In 1951 Murray was on the critical reconnaissance that established a potential route up Everest via the Khumbu Icefall. Marrying happily, Murray built a career as a writer and conservationist, writing Highland Landscape a counsel of protection for the National Trust of Scotland. Murray died in 1996, and The Evidence of Things not Seen was published posthumously.
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Very interesting background on the climbing of Everest for which the work of the 1951 reconnaissance expedition was vital.
Completed before his death but only published now.
Wrote Mountaineering in Scotland the definitive early guide and many other books during his lifetime
Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
Murray has a precise and engaging turn of phrase, and an amazing wealth of experiences to entertain the reader with. I found ( as I often do with these sort of books) the chapters regarding Himalayan trudges to be a bit laborious, but even in these passages, Murray's light touch, compassion and strength of character as well as physical hardiness shine through.Some other chapters are proper 'boys own' material- hemp rope epics, chopping steps on first accents of Scottish V's, desert rat battles and escape exploits from POW camps... through all these experiences Murray holds on to his unique mix of sensitivity and insight, which occasionally become almost yogi-like, but not in an annoying way.
Its one of those books that you find yourself being reminded of at the weirdest times, such in the variety and intensity of both the content and delivery. Highly recommended.