Monday, August 2, 2010

The Ascent-Ronald Malfi

The Ascent
Ronald Malfi
Medallion, Sep 1 2010, $24.95
ISBN 9781605420677

Affluent risk-taker Andrew Trumbauer loves to take on an impossible challenge. His current quest is to climb an impossible Himalayan peak in Nepal that has never been achieved. He and his selected team of six will traverse the Himalayas’ Valley of Walls until they reach the Sanctuary of the Gods before crossing the impossible Canyon of Souls that none has successfully crossed. Andrew will fund the entire venture and also pay his comrades for the daredevil risk they take.

One of the chosen is renowned sculptor Widower Tim Overleigh, who quit art for extreme sports having never recovered from his wife Hannah walking out on him and before he could attempt reconciliation with her; she died in a car crash. He turned to alcohol to dim the mental anguish of loss, compounded by a caving incident. Now as he and the others make their ascent, Tim begins to believe that their fearless leader has two overlapping plans with one obviously to complete the unattainable and the other is pure sinister.

This is an exhilarating thriller as man challenges the Himalayas and each other on a quest that seems almost suicidal yet they try because it is there. Fast-paced, the story line spins from perilous mountain climbing into something more hazardous than hanging off a cliff at the top of the world. Readers will relish Ronald Malfi’s exciting tale as the men make a dramatic Ascent to the top of the world, but cannot ascend man’s insidious nature.

Harriet Klausner

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