April Meeting

Everest '96 by Ken Vernon (2015).  Summary of the South African team's experience during the tragic Everest climbing season of 1996.  Journalist Vernon, on the team as a representative of the sponsoring South African newspaper, confirms, yet expands, the negative image of Ian Woodall and Cathy O'Dowd presented in other climbing books about the season.  Despite the need of a good proofreader, the book should be of interest to anyone fascinated by the 1996 Everest tragedy.

Radio Silence by Alyssa Cole (2015).  First in a trilogy that includes Signal Boost and Mixed Signals.  Although no one knows why, electricity stops working, and polite veneer of society quickly disintegrated.  We meet roommates and best friends Arden and John in the woods, attempting to reach John's family's cabin.  What happens when they reach the cabin?  Are they safe now?  Interesting, well-rounded characters pulled me into quickly buying the other books in the trilogy.

Dancing with Myself by Billy Idol (2014).  Hearing certain Billy Idol songs transports me immediately to one of my favorite weekends, high school French and Spanish Clubs joint trip to Chicago in October 1986.  Sweet memories!  Idol's autobiography doesn't disappoint--plenty of hard living, good music, and memorable moments.  Recommended for any fans of his '80s music.

The Mystery of Everett Ruess by W.L. Rusho (updated 2010).  A writer and artist, Everett Ruess disappeared in 1934, age 20, in the American Southwest.  Most of Rusho's book is a compilation of Ruess' 1930-1934 letters to his parents, older brother, and friends.  Ruess' block prints and Rusho's photos provide a backdrop to Ruess' descriptions.  While interesting to read, Ruess' thoughts and actions reflect his extreme youth.

The Last Season by Eric Blehm (2006).  Exploration of the life, career, and line-of-duty disappearance, in 1996, of Sierra backcountry Ranger Randy Morgenson.  Fortunately for Morgenson's widow and friends, his remains were found five years after his death, so at least they found a closure denied to Ruess' loved ones.