The Ascent

The Ascent by Ronald Malfi
Published by Medallion Press
Published 1 September 2010
320 pages
Library book

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Buy the book: UK (affiliate’s link)

Buy the book: USA

I read this for 2017 Popsugar Reading Challenge. The category is ‘a book set in the wilderness’.


After the death of his ex-wife, successful sculptor Tim Overleigh trades in his lucrative career for the world of extreme sports, but when a caving accident nearly ends his life, Tim falls into a self-destructive depression. On the cusp of madness, an old friend convinces him to join a team of men climbing the Godesh ridge in Nepal. When this journey of mythical and spiritual discovery rapidly turns deadly as the climbers fall victim to a murderer within their group, the remaining survivors begin to wonder if any of them will escape the mountains alive.


I WASN’T THERE WHEN IT HAPPENED. BUT I CAN SEE it nonetheless: the Italian countryside cool in the stirrings of an early summer that promises not to be too overbearing.


This is my first time reading the author. I have a copy of his book Little Girls on my Kindle and look forward to reading it. The Ascent blew me away. It turned out to be a different book than the one I was expecting. In a good way. I thought it would be a run-of the-mill sinister novel about bad shit happening in the middle of nowhere. It was but it sort of wasn’t. The Ascent is brilliantly paced, building up tension until it becomes unbearable to read. I felt like I was right there with Tim and the rest of the group during the ill-fated trip. I was unsettled from page one until I reached the end. The Ascent throws the characters into an awful situation where things just get worse and worse. I loved it. I was riveted. I really don’t understand people who undertake tasks like Tim and his friends. This aspect of the novel was real and all the more terrifying. The killer is not who I expected at all and I was pleasantly surprised. I thought The Ascent was fantastic and would highly recommend it.




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