Thin Air: The most chilling and compelling ghost story of the year
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Granted, such stories about climbing mountains in the 30's have a long tradition. And of course, so do ghost stories. But regardless, this mash-up was first and foremost WELL WRITTEN. Modern style, of course. I cannot recommend this book enough. If you enjoyed Michelle's previous ghost story, Dark Matter, you'll love this one. If you love anything supernatural, a bit scary, ghostly, then you'll enjoy it too. It's a fantastic read thats absorbing and totally paralysing. Beautifully, lyrically written. A five star read if ever there was one! * EMPIRE OF BOOKS * It's chilling. Thrilling. And downright scary. From the get go I had chills running up and down my body. I had the shakes at one particular point and had to keep looking up to make sure that I was actually on my own. Such is the power of Michelle's story telling that I felt like there was an unwanted entity with me, watching me, plotting to take me down the way the ghost in the story does. When reading it you really feel the sense of isolation the characters are feeling. You can feel it build, and it almost feels like a physical reaction for you as the reader. You start to second guess things, start to try to think of a logical explanation, even when there isn't place for one. By the end of the book I really felt the paranoia set in and it made me wonder what I would be like in that sort of situation. I could hardly read it without losing my cool, I dread to think what I would be like. Hmm. I have no doubt at all that Michelle Paver is a talented author, she certainly writes about the cold and snow very well, but... well I wasn’t at all scared. Not once. I felt the same way about 'Dark Matter,' I couldn’t see what everyone else was talking about, I still don’t. The two novels are very similar and sadly I was underwhelmed by both of them. The story is also fascinating on the subject of such expeditions and the attitudes of those who took part in them. The white men on the expedition are essentially gentlemen-adventurers. They are privileged enough to be able to undertake such challenges as amateurs and are disdainful of anyone who might dare to be a professional - thus effective denying anyone other than the wealthy a chance at taking part. They are believers in Empire and their treatment of the Sherpas is, needless to say, appalling. Intellectualism is scorned - indeed, it's Stephen's academic nature that's been the cause of friction between him and Kits for most of their childhood.
Dark Matter: the gripping ghost story from the author of Dark Matter: the gripping ghost story from the author of
The Himalayas, 1935.Kangchenjunga. The sacred mountain. Biggest killer of them all.Five Englishmen set out to conquer it. But courage can only take them so far. And the higher they climb, the darker it gets. About This Edition ISBN: I love stories about climbing expeditions so I try to read as many as I can. This one focuses more on the ghost story aspect versus a lot of climbing details which is still great but if you are looking for more of a technical perspective then you probably want to read a true account instead of this. Thin Air: A Ghost Story fitted the bill perfectly for me, this is more the the sort of story that is eerie and chilling and unsettling as opposed to scary. It is rich in atmosphere, the environment stunningly described. Kangchenjunga is a formidable character in its own right and it is a deadly one. but it is also such a satisfying ghost story, so perfect for these darker evenings, and it is wrapped within a beautifully told and sad tale. Thin Air succeeds as an excellent ghost story and horror novel but it is also a wonderful piece of historical fiction and I thoroughly recommend it. * FOR WINTER NIGHTS blog * Her depictions of its dangers are terrifyingly deathlike, too, and the growing menace of the high-altitude phantom is horrible.Michelle Paver was born in Nyasaland (now Malawi) in central Africa. Her family settled in Wimbledon, England when she was three. She was educated at the Wimbledon High School. After reading biochemistry at Lady Margaret Hall, University of Oxford, she became a partner in a City of London law firm. Her father's death in 1996 prompted her to take a one-year sabbatical, in which she travelled and wrote her first book,Without Charity.
Thin Air – Michelle Paver
The team are following in the footsteps of a previous, failed attempt at the summit by an Edwardian group led by a man called Lyell, who went on to write a book about his doomed expedition which Stephen and Kits both read as climbing-obsessed children. Kits is gung-ho about the journey to the summit, but as the ascent continues, Stephen becomes increasingly uneasy as he senses an oppressive, malevolent presence on the mountain and begins to see a dark shape moving on the crags above. Except they don’t. Not completely anyways. There is more to this mountain, and all the training and mountaineering experience won’t prepare them for it.I really loved Michelle Paver's ghost story 'Dark matter' set during the 1930's about an arctic expedition, so I was really looking forward to her follow novel! Following Lyell’s route are Kits, Stephen, Major Cotterell, McLellan and Garrard – Kit’s best friend. Despite Captain Tennant’s request that they do not follow the same route up the South-West face, the party ignore his plea and continue as planned. Dr Pearce finds the jungle oppressive and dislikes the superstition and fear which surrounds the mountain. However, it is once they begin the climb that his unsettled feelings gradually turn to fear. Is he imagining things, or is there something - or someone - on the mountain, that is watching them? This is pacey, readable historical fiction with a good sense of period and atmosphere. I enjoyed Pearce’s narration, and the one-upmanship type of relationship with his brother adds an interesting dimension to the expedition dynamics. However, I never submitted sufficiently to Paver’s spell to find anything particularly scary. I’ll try again with her other ghost story, Dark Matter, about an Arctic expedition from the same time period.
Thin Air: A Ghost Story by Michelle Paver | Goodreads Thin Air: A Ghost Story by Michelle Paver | Goodreads
I particularly liked the interplay of the Sherpas and the Sahibs. The Sherpas are laughed at because of their beliefs, it turns out though that prayers and superstition are the only defence against what’s up on that mountain. Shame on you Sahibs 🥶 Powerful, creepy, evocative – rest assured, Thin Air proves a more than worthy follow up to Dark Matter!”There's just something about the bleakness, the sheer depth of the isolation and the unfamiliarity of this terrain to me that I love in this book. Put that alongside the fact that it's a mix of psychological thriller and ghost story , and you've got a winner. * REBEL ANGEL blog *
Thin Air by Michelle Paver | Waterstones
Having really enjoyed, “Dark Matter,” I was keen to read this, new novel, by Michelle Paver. Normally, I dislike comparing an author’s novels, but there is much to compare in, “Thin Air,” to “Dark Matter.” Both deal with remote places and extreme temperatures. Both are, essentially, ghost stories… Michelle Paver's descriptions of Himalayan mountain-climbing are terrifyingly lifelike - the lashing winds, glittering ice: you can see it all...Paver's style is lively and clear; and the tale just rips along...Just fantastic -- Wendy Holden DAI LY MAIL I could feel the chilly winds and the cold in this one and the eerie feel of the mountain really comes to life in her vivid writing. Thin Air is, like Paver's previous ghost story Dark Matter, a truly frightening ghost story. Something of an outsider in the group and deeply resentful of Kits - who despite being less intelligent than Stephen is far wealthier and more successful and something of a bully - Stephen is horribly isolated in his fear and terrified not only of the dark presence that plagues him but, as a doctor, also of the idea that he might somehow be losing his rational, scientific grip on reality. The terror that unfolds is oppressive and, despite the scale of Stephen's surroundings, inescapably claustrophobic. It's often vague and a lot goes unsaid, which for me is always more unnerving than detailed description. It's the sense of fear itself and Stephen's powerlessness that are the truly frightening thing here. The descriptions of the Himalayas themselves are also powerfully evocative. Gosh, but Thin Air is a creepy story. Paver squeezes the last drop of desolation and isolation out of her Himalayan setting…Once we get further into the story, and higher up the mountain, the creepiness begins. At the start, there are just small occurrences of unease, a shadow at the edge of Stephen’s vision or the dark shape of a man further up the mountain. But as we read on, weirder things begin to happen. I loved the atmosphere Paver created in this novel, you can really lose yourself in scenario’s and feel the plummeting sense of fear and dread that plagues Stephen. Best Books Set in the 1920s — from Stories That Shimmer with Champagne and Social Change, to Rip-roaring Reads Covering Crime, Colonialism and Beyond.