Cold by Ranulph Fiennes

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Tracing the history of polar exploration, [Fiennes] finds men deranged by isolation; ruthless captains abandoning unwanted crew in the uninhabitable Arctic; scurvy merrily rotting the gums of every man it touches. He relates, in juicy detail, stories of cannibalism and the public outcry they provoked at home

'How did you lose several fingers? A mystery. I know what I can and can't do at minus 30 and minus 40. It was a normal icy day. I was not in a danger zone. If you try peeling a banana with mitts on, you can't. Therefore you take them off. I took 'em off and saw my hand had gone white. The same hand had done a winter ascent of the Eiger. I knew what it had got itself into. I had to get back to safety, which meant putting the hand in my crotch, the only warm place. I was in a whiteout. An Irishman came back very kindly to help - endangering himself' Kate Kellaway 'One of the world s greatest living explorers has described in a new book how his wife s thoughtfulness enabled him to survive a heart attack on Everest. The brush with death is one of several narrow escapes recounted in Cold' Sian Griffiths, Sunday Times 'Perhaps when you are as driven as he is you can never be fulfilled but Fiennes, who once used a fretsaw to cut off his frost-bitten finger tips, is probably assured of legend status. Not just because of the £14m he s raised for charity, his contribution to science and his catalogue of physical achievements, but that he personifies, as this book testifies, the indomitability of the human spirit and the belief that anything is possible' Flemmich Webb, Independent 'Tracing the history of polar exploration, [Fiennes] finds men deranged by isolation; ruthless captains abandoning unwanted crew in the uninhabitable Arctic; scurvy merrily rotting the gums of every man it touches. He relates, in juicy detail, stories of cannibalism and the public outcry they provoked at home' Stefanie Marsh, The Times 'This celebration of the most brutally cold places on Earth covers man s early discoveries through to the first crossing of the Antarctic during winter.' --Evening Standard

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