Breathe To Read

Breathe To Read

Friday, January 25, 2019

Read The World - Argentina - Alive

Book: Alive - The Story of the Andes Survivors
Author: Piers Paul Read
Pages: 318
Book Takes Places in the country: YES
Author is from the country: NO
I have visited: NO

This is the first book I actually read in the cross of the new year.  I finished it quickly - by January 2nd.  I have seen bits and pieces of this movie in the past, and was curious to read about the story. 
Considering that I am going to try and borrow most of the books I read this year before I buy them (in case I don't like it and want to change my choice), I am reading in no particular country order.  I read when a book becomes available at the library, so the order will be all over the place.

This book tells the true story of a rugby team whose plane crashes in the Andes in 1972.  The crash is high in the snow covered mountains killing some of the 40 travelers immediately.  The remaining passengers (many who are between the ages of 19-21) need to figure out how to survive until rescue comes.  The pilots are dead, as is the radio, so there is no way to figure out where they are and how to call for help.  Many of the passengers are injured - some fatally so.  

For 72 days, the remaining members of the passengers are trapped on the mountain. They weren't traveling with many possessions, and the below freezing temperatures each night and a broken, open plane quickly became a death sentence for many.  Out of 40, only 16 survive, and in the end - rescue never came to them.  Brave members of the team had to escape the mountain to get help far below where they were staying.

While on the mountain, the passengers were forced to do unthinkable acts in order to stay alive.  They worked with what little resources they had to tend to injuries and keep from freezing to death.

This was a pretty good book.  The story is incredible - I cannot believe that these passengers were able to survive for as long as they did deep in the Andes mountains.  There had been no food on the flight, so they started with only a little food posessions that the passengers had brought themselves.  They didn't have a lot of heavy clothes and the tail of the plane had landed in a completely different place, so they didn't have a lot of the suitcases.  The plane was broken in pieces, so they had a hard time keeping out the cold and the wet.  They had a major avalanche that buried people and the plane.  They lived through impossible situation after impossible situation.  And even after the police gave up the search, their parents never gave up.  But it still took the passengers getting themselves off the mountain and noticed or they would have all perished because no plane could find them.  They were not able to be spotted from the air.

I recommend this read, and then watching the movie afterwards.  Their survival is a tale that should be known.

Stars: 4


  1. This is amazing, I never get how people can survive something like that. Being able to work together to get out of the mountain!

  2. Oh wow this book sounds really good, great review!