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The Life and Death of the First Women of K2126
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Here is narrative nonfiction at its most gripping. Journalist Jennifer Jordan chronicled the individual stories of the five courageous women who have climbed K2, the most fearsome mountain in the world. Climbers call K2 "The Savage Mountain." It is not quite as tall as Everest, but it is far more dangerous, located at the border of China and Pakistan, in the deadly Karakoram range, which has the harshest climbing conditions and weather of any place in the world. Ninety women have climbed Everest, but only five female climbers have ever reached the summit of K2 alive. Three of these women died on the way back down the mountain, and the other two have died since their climb. Because, these five women, who defeated the most ferocious of all mountains, have lost their own voices, "Savage Summit" told their tragic and compelling stories. The terror and triumph of K2 was revealed through the stories of the few women who have succeeded in climbing it. The women in these stories are forced to deal with harsh conditions from the mountain, and from the men climbing around them, often being treated unfairly or discriminated against in their struggle to get to the summit. "Savage Summit" also attempted to answer tough questions: do female climbers rely too much on their male climbing partners? Are women prepared for the physiological and emotional rigors of K2? Are female climbers, because of the publicity and sponsorship opportunities afforded them, climbing the mountain without the proper training, endangering their own lives and the lives of those who climb with them? And, if women are as capable of men of climbing this most deadly peak, who will be next to attempt the long trek to the summit?
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"Jordan...gives us a sense of the rapture that comes from standing on top of the world's highest mountains." -- Los Angeles Times "For mountain-climbing enthusiasts and women's history buffs, Jordan's well-researched survey is worthwhile reading..." -- Publishers Weekly "SAVAGE SUMMIT fills an interesting and neglected place in mountaineering literature." -- American Alpine Club Magazine
Jennifer Jordan has lived at the base of K2 twice while writing and producing a National Geographic documentary called "The Women of K2." She is a writer, producer, and news anchor, having anchored NPR's "All Things Considered"