In honor of the nuclear deal struck between Iran and the world powers, I’ve made my eArticle Rope Diplomacy: On the Steeps in Iran FREE for the next five days.
In the summer of 2011, I traveled to Iran with National Geographic photographer Stephen Alvarez and spent a jaw-dropping month climbing some of the highest mountains in the Islamic Republic of Iran and doing some excellent rock climbing. We were members of a goodwill exchange between the American Alpine Club and the Alpine Club of Iran intended to improve the strained relations between our two peoples. Besides having wild adventures in gorgeous mountains, we built excellent relationships with our Persian hosts, gained a better appreciation of the ancient culture of Iran, and experienced some of the tensions inherent in life in modern Iran, all at a time when the two captured American hikers were still languishing in a Tehran prison.
(Note: You do not need a Kindle or dedicated eReader to read digitally. You can download the free Kindle app to most any electronic device. It’s easy to do and easy to use.)
Stephen’s website is gorgeous: Alvarezphotography.com, and full of gobsmacking images and stories.
I’ve made a number of posts about Iran, with some of my own photographs. They’re available through the “Iran” category of this website.
I got quoted in “The Big Question” department of the July/August 2015 issue of The Atlantic, alongside a number of other aviation authors and luminaries.
I wrote an article for them three years ago, “The Peaks of Persia” (April, 2012), which tells the story of my 2011 climbing trip to Iran as a participant in a climbing exchange between the American Alpine Club and the Alpine Club of Iran–an incredible, eye-opening adventure.
Milton Caniff, one of the greatest American cartoonists, is perhaps most famous for his comic strip Terry and the Pirates. a 1930s and ’40s flying adventure set in China. China National Aviation Corporation (CNAC) pilot Frank Higgs was an Ohio State classmate and fraternity brother of Caniff’s, and in the comic, Higgs served as the model for Caniff’s character Dude Hennick. As such, CNAC features regularly in Terry and the Pirates.
Here’s a Terry and the Pirates panel that mentions CNAC as it appeared in the Los Angeles Times on November 21, 1943. (Click on the picture and it’ll enlarge pretty well.)
(Thanks to Kai Freise, a CNAC and China’s Wings enthusiast in India, for pushing this along.)
CNAC pilot’s wings on a map of the Hump
I’m pleased to announce that China’s Wings has been translated into Chinese and published in China. Many thanks to Angie Chen, who did the translation.
My publisher tells me that none of the following sites will ship outside China, but here are three that should get the job done should you like to acqure a Chinese edition:
Amazon China; JD; and Dangdang.
It feels a strange being the author of a book in which I can’t read a single word, but I’m really glad that China’s Wings is finally available in The Middle Kingdom.
Here’s “America’s Way of War,” my review of The Hidden History of America at War: Untold Stories from Yorktown to Fallujah by Kenneth C. Davis, which appeared in The Washington Post on June 5, 2015.
Here are the other two book reviews I’ve done for The Washington Post in recent months:
No Man’s Land: Preparing for War and Peace in Post-9/11 America by Elizabeth Samet
(“Can Ovid and Harry Potter guide us through this era?” for The Washington Post, November 7, 2014)
Acid Test: LSD, Ecstasy and the Power to Heal by Tom Shroder.
(“Ecstasy Therapy” for The Washington Post, September 11, 2014.)
And here’s a link to all of the 20 books reviews I’ve done for The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, NPR, and others.
Today, Jeffery Fleishman of The Los Angeles Times published “At West Point, Warriors Shaped Through Plutarch and Shakespeare,” an interesting story about West Point English professor Elizabeth Samet.
She’s the author of No Man’s Land: Preparing for War and Peace in Post-9/11 America, which I reviewed for The Washington Post on November 7, 2014 in “Can Ovid and Harry Potter Guide Us Through This Era.”
Having read Fleishman’s article (linked to above), I stand by my judgment that Samet is “clearly an extraordinary and inspiring teacher.”
West Point is lucky to have her.
(Thanks to Tessa Kaganoff for bringing this story to my attention.)
Coming soon to a bookstore near you… if you live in China:
“Slippery Slopes,” my review of Daniel Arnold’s new short story collection Snowblind: Stories of Alpine Obsession, was in The Wall Street Journal last weekend (April 4 & 5, 2015).
Good effort from Arnold.
I’ve linked to a Google search, because linking directly to the review runs into the WSJ paywall; from the search, if you click the link to the review, it should take you to the full text. I’ve used the same trick for all the WSJ reviews below.
Here’s the list of other books I’ve reviewed.
Two stars out of five on Goodreads.
It wasn’t as bad as I expected.