A Welcome Review

John Harlin IIII’m feeling a bit starstruck today after an incredibly complimentary note from John Harlin III. A member of the Harlin climbing dynasty, John is author of the Eiger Obsession: Facing the Mountain That Killed my Father, star of the Imax film, The Alps (about his own Eiger ascent) and recently retired editor of the American Alpine Journal.

Thank you John. These are generous words and I’m delighted that you share my vision of the future of illustrated books. I mean, coffee tablet books. (Rather than wait for a review copy, John bought the very first copy on iTunes two weeks ago.)

Everest: High Expectations, by Pat Morrow and Sharon Wood, is at the vanguard of the new wave in publishing. It’s an iPad-only book about two milestone Canadian expeditions to Everest in the 1980s. One journey takes Pat Morrow to the summit after four people died early in the expedition. The other is Sharon Wood’s struggle for the top via a new route with no Sherpa support… Both of these stories are historically important and superbly written.
… this is the first mountain book to fully utilize the incredible new iBooksAuthor system from Apple, which helps authors create multi-media “coffee tablet books.” I think it’s brilliant. It brings a book to life like never before, including slideshows, video, and sound clips. And yet the design follows the aesthetic tradition of a photo-heavy book that you’d proudly display on your coffee table. So it’s a “coffee tablet” book.
I’m convinced that growth in publishing will be in tablets and I recommend this book for two reasons:
1) these are gripping good tales that are gorgeous to look at, and
2) this book is making history, as perhaps the very first climbing book designed specifically for today’s most exciting medium.

2 thoughts on “A Welcome Review

  1. I agree 100%…This is cutting edge writing and technology; the ultimate multi-media experience. To be able to read a “great adventure” and then “drop” into a a stream, meet the authors, is brilliant. Pat Morrow has always had “vision” and I applaud him for “breaking ground” in cyberspace, as he always has in the mountains, photography and film, and integrity as a human being concerned about our planet and the humans that inhabit it. I applaud the e-publisher, Pat, and Sharon for leading the Way. Rob Torkildson

  2. Pat Morrow and Sharon Wood are among the most down-to-earth mountaineers that I have encountered so it’s no surprise that their perspectives on Everest and the dynamics of Himalayan expeditions are insightful and thought-provoking. This “coffee tablet” book for iPads is a highly creative use of the iBook format with spectacular images combined with audio and video clips. They reveal the tension and excitement surrounding their expeditions and reflect on the sad truth that the mountain has become one more peak to bag for many over-achievers. The technology of this iBook is particularly remarkable when I think back to the time of the ’82 expedition when hand-written dispatches from the mountain had to be carried by Sherpa mailrunners back to Kathmandu where the news was relayed back to Canada.

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