Monday, March 10, 2014

Adventuring in a new way

While I think the question of "what is an adventure narrative?" is definitely brought up when reading this book in particular, I cannot find a valid argument for why this would not be classified as such. Although fiction - which is a major difference from the other books we've read thus far in the course - why is it not an adventure? Does Trevanian not add more of an air of adventure because of the assassin aspect of the novel? This simply added to the adventure of the novel for me. But, it comes down to one's definition of adventure - of what constitutes an adventure. And this, to me, does not have a set definition. Instead, it is personalized, individualized by one's own experiences.


  1. I can relate to your struggle of how to label this book. We have yet to concretely explore what makes something an adventure narrative and I don't think we will ever be able to agree. Does there even need to be a mountain in an adventure narrative or is it just the ones we've read? It definitely comes down to defining adventure-- risk, death, intensity: this book has it all. Why not?

  2. It's got it all, except validity, and for some reason that haunts me throughout this novel. Sarah, you mentioned the fact that The Eiger Sanction is fiction as a major difference between this and our previous readings. It's obvious, and there has not been a moment during the reading of this book when I have forgotten that fact, but somehow I think that it diminished the mountain for me. There is a noticeable friction between the armchair and the adventure that has not been present to me before. The added qualities to a story that the medium of fiction can provide (of which Joe Simpson utilized a few) have not drawn me deeper into the world of The Eiger Sanction as they did with Touching The Void. As I sit and read this novel, I catch myself thinking "Oh, that's ridiculous," on my high horse of zero spy and climbing credentials. I've been quick to criticize decisions made on the mountain and the credibility of authors in the past, but with this novel those judgments interrupted the reading experience as opposed to contributing to it. I can appreciate a fallible narrator, but for some reason I apparently can't completely appreciate this fantastic one.