The Boy and the Mountain: A Father, His Son, and a Journey of Discovery
Published by: Greystone Books
Imprint: Greystone Books
Sales Date: 2023-05-23
Published: May 2023
Imprint: Greystone Books
Page Count: 144 Pages
Dimensions: 5.50 x 7.75
144 Pages, 5.50 x 7.75 x 0.75 in
In StockAdd to Wishlist
In this engrossing book, a father and son ascend a mountain together, retracing the steps of a boy who went missing there a century earlier—a quest that spawns a tender meditation on nature, family, and the joy of discovery.
Six-year-old Hans Torske disappeared in Norway's Skrim mountains in 1894. Why he wandered away from his family's cabin is still a mystery, but his body was found the following summer, lying atop a 2,860-foot mountain peak and covered with his thin jacket. More than 100 years later, nature writer Torbjørn Ekelund and his seven-year-old son, August, attempt the same summit. It's August's first overnight hiking trip, and Ekelund is eager to share his love of nature with his son. But soon he notices that the ways children and adults experience nature are vastly different, for better and for worse.
The Boy and the Mountain reflects on what parenthood requires: experiencing the joy of watching your child go out into the world for the first time, while also worrying about the dangers they may face. Filled with curiosity, humility, and deep gratitude for wild places, this gem of a book is a celebration of the uncompromising nature of the elements, our bond with them, and the special relationship between father and son.
"This gorgeous little book reads like a meditation—as sparse and polished as the Norwegian wilderness. Ekelund's tender reflections on his father-son journey offer a stirring reminder of the inescapable and elemental forces that shape all our lives: love, family, and landscape."
—Bruce Kirkby, author of Blue Sky Kingdom: An Epic Family Journey to the Heart of the Himalaya
"The Boy and The Mountain strikes right to the heart of what it means to be a parent. . . With great sophistication, vulnerability, and honesty, Ekelund weaves together the story of two little mountaineers in the same place over a century apart. The book is a brilliant study in connection: present to past, parent to child, and human to nature."
—Angie Abdou, author of This One Wild Life
"Torbjørn Ekelund has given us a story of a father and son now, and another boy who lost his way long ago. It explores the ache and wonder of being a parent, and our longing for a deeper relationship with the rest of nature. I was deeply moved."
—Richard Louv, author of Last Child in the Woods: Saving Our Children from Nature-Deficit Disorder and Our Wild Calling
Praise for In Praise of Paths by Torbjørn Ekelund
"What [Ekelund]'s addressing is the intention to walk one's way to meaning: the walk as spiritual exercise, a kind of vision quest in which the answers we arrive at are less important than the impulse to seek them."
—New York Times
"A charming read, celebrating the relationship between humans and their bodies, their landscapes, and one another."
—The Washington Post
"This lovely book taps into something primeval in us all."
"[R]ethinking the social, historical, and spiritual needs that are met by putting one foot in front of the other."
"[Urges] a return to our ambulatory origins?[N]ever low on zeal."