Inspired by a true story, Paths of Glory bring to life one of history's enduringly enigmatic figures in a stunning novel from bestselling author Jeffrey Archer.
Some people have dreams that are so outrageous that if they were to achieve them, their place in history would be guaranteed. Francis Drake, Robert Scott, Percy Fawcett, Charles Lindbergh, Amy Johnson, Edmund Hillary and Neil Armstrong are among such individuals. But what if one man had such a dream, and when he'd fulfilled it, there was no proof that he had achieved his ambition?
Paths of Glory is the story of such a man. But not until you've turned the last page of Jeffrey Archer's extraordinary novel, will you be able to decide if mountaineer George Mallory should be added to this list of legends, because if he were, another name would have to be removed.
A real-life mountaineering mystery serves as the springboard for bestseller Archer's abysmal latest. The plot begins promisingly with the body of mountaineer George Mallory discovered on the slopes of Mt. Everest in 1999, possibly having been the first man to have reached the summit. But hopes of an adventurous yarn are soon dashed as the novel becomes a long flashback, offering stock vignettes of Mallory's childhood, Cambridge days and mountaineering adventures. These passages are hampered by phoned-in writing, clumsy attempts at verisimilitude and a notable lack of psychological depth. Along the way, Mallory marries, becomes a father, serves in WWI and finds himself pitted against Australian mountaineer George Finch as a potential leader of Britain's push to conquer Everest. Archer does eventually offer his opinion as to whether Mallory summited Everest, but by that point all but his most devoted fans will have fled the icy crags of this lifeless novel.
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Another cracking read!!!
Excellent. Very thought provoking. I cried at the end. Read it!!!!! :)
Paths of Glory
As with all Archer novels this is an easy but compelling read. George Leigh Mallory comes across as a man driven by his need to climb anything in his way. However, he also comes across as a thoroughly likeable and humane man.
Archer skilfully weaves Mallory's obsession with his everyday life to create a very enjoyable book. That you know the end before the beginning does not matter as you turn the pages, as Mallory seems to be such an engaging and charismatic man.
Having seen a documentary about Mallory and Conrad Anker's quest to find him made the text all the more realistic.