Joe Simpson has experienced a life filled with adventure but marred by death. He has endured the painful attrition of climbing friends in accidents, calling into question the perilously exhilarating activity to which he has devoted his life. Probability is inexorably closing in. The tragic loss of a close friend forces a momentous decision upon him. It is time to turn his back on the mountains that he has loved. Never more alive than when most at risk, he has come to see a last climb on the hooded, mile-high North Face of the Eiger as the cathartic finale.
In a narrative which takes the reader through extreme experiences, from an avalanche in Bolivia, ice-climbing in the Alps and Colorado and paragliding in Spain - before his final confrontation with the Eiger - Simpson reveals the inner truth of climbing, exploring both the power of the mind and the frailties of the body. The subject of his new book is the siren song of fear and his struggle to come to terms with it.