On Saturday, 26 April 2003, Aron Ralston, a 27-year-old outdoorsman and adventurer, set off for a day's hike in the Utah canyons. Eight miles from his truck, he found himself in the middle of a deep and remote canyon. Then the unthinkable happened: a boulder shifted and snared his right arm against the canyon wall. He was trapped, facing ...Read MoreOn Saturday, 26 April 2003, Aron Ralston, a 27-year-old outdoorsman and adventurer, set off for a day's hike in the Utah canyons. Eight miles from his truck, he found himself in the middle of a deep and remote canyon. Then the unthinkable happened: a boulder shifted and snared his right arm against the canyon wall. He was trapped, facing dehydration, starvation, hallucinations and hypothermia as night-time temperatures plummeted. Five and a half days later, Aron Ralston finally came to the agonising conclusion that his only hope was to amputate his own arm and get himself to safety. Miraculously, he survived. BETWEEN A ROCK AND A HARD PLACE is more than just an adventure story. It is a brave, honest and above all inspiring account of one man's valiant effort to survive, and is destined to take its place among adventure classics such as TOUCHING THE VOID.Read Less
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Publishers Weekly, 2004-11-01 Ralston's story is one of the most gut-wrenching and compelling real-life adventures in recent years: in early 2003, the avid rock-climber and outdoorsman became trapped in a Utah mountain canyon when an 800-pound boulder pinned his right arm. He spent six days there, fighting both the physical challenges of pain and dehydration, and the psychological horror that eroded his hope and energy. Eventually, he amputated his own arm with his pocket knife in order to gain his freedom. It's a truly remarkable story, and hearing Ralston retell it is alternately fascinating and unbearable. After a brief setup that details his life as an adventurer, he arrives at his moment of horror, walking the listener in painstaking detail through everything he felt and thought; his honest and blunt language (" `What are you doing, Aron? Get that knife away from your wrist!' I feel vaguely ill... my vision blurs in a nauseating swirl"), paired with his direct and non-sensational delivery, wrap the listener in a mental blanket of claustrophobia. Although squeamish listeners might find this audio presentation too overwhelming, it's a riveting document of one man's extraordinary trial. Simultaneous release with the Atria hardcover (Forecasts, Aug. 9). (Sept.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Publishers Weekly, 2004-08-09 In a moving account of strength in the face of adversity, Ralston presents the full story behind the 2003 event that became worldwide news: his self-amputation of his right arm after it was caught between a boulder and a canyon wall during what began as a routine day hike in the Utah Canyons. An experienced climber, Ralston, 28, effectively shows he wasn't a risk-taker, and alternates between describing how his jaunt turned into a nightmare when a huge stone suddenly came unstuck as he used it to climb down a ledge, and recalling early experiences that changed his novice attitudes toward hiking, which he admits "were not intrinsically safe." Ralston candidly renders the details of six days of entrapment, using transcribed monologues from videotapes he made while trapped, including his increasingly exhausted thoughts as well as poignant farewells to his family. But his best writing details his self-amputation and his subsequent march to safety, in which he rappelled one-armed down a hill and then hiked six miles before someone found him. Ralston's prose is never gruesome, nor is it used to shock, even as he describes first breaking his forearm, and then slipping "into some sort of autopilot" as he cuts through muscle fibers to detach the arm. It's truly thrilling when he finishes and is free: "A crystalline moment shatters and the world is a different place." 16 pages of color photos. Simultaneous audio release. Agent, Ron Elberger. (Sept. 14) Forecast: National radio and print ads, an upcoming NBC special with Tom Brokaw, a 12-city author tour and multiple excerpts in magazines such as Outside will bring much attention to Ralston's already well-known story. (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
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