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The Snow Leopard

Matthiessen, Peter

9,430 ratings by Goodreads
ISBN 10: 0670653748 / ISBN 13: 9780670653744
Published by Vikin, NY, 1978
Condition: Very Good Hardcover
From On The Road Books (Waynesboro, PA, U.S.A.)

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About this Item

Book has moderate foxing to top paper edges, a paragraph underlined on pp18, 3 lines underlined pp73, 12 lines underlined pp77, 10 lines underlined pp87, 8 lines on pp92, 9 lines pp95 - That's the extent of it, but ala,s the underlining though thin and light is there to stay. DJ has 1"(W)x3/4"(H) piece missing on bottom front edge of DJ, light creasing on top front edge of DJ, crease on top edge of DJ spine, 3/4" closed tear on bottom rear edge of DJ. 338pp with Notes/Index. Dark blue cloth. 1st Ed. (Pub. in 1978 by Viking Press - 0878 on bottom corner of front flap). Tight, square, bright copy with firm corners. No remainder mark. No internal names, notations. Pictorial unclipped DJ in Mylar cover ($12.95). Award winner. Matthiessen's works belong in any environmentalist's library. USPS Tracking provided. H Size: 8vo - over 7¾" - 9¾" tall. Bookseller Inventory # 19299

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Bibliographic Details

Title: The Snow Leopard

Publisher: Vikin, NY

Publication Date: 1978

Binding: Cloth

Book Condition:Very Good

Dust Jacket Condition: Very Good +

Edition: First Edition.

Book Type: Natural History

About this title

Synopsis:

An unforgettable spiritual journey through the Himalayas by renowned writer Peter Matthiessen (1927-2014), the National Book Award-winning author of the new novel In Paradise

In 1973, Peter Matthiessen and field biologist George Schaller traveled high into the remote mountains of Nepal to study the Himalayan blue sheep and possibly glimpse the rare and beautiful snow leopard. Matthiessen, a student of Zen Buddhism, was also on a spiritual quest to find the Lama of Shey at the ancient shrine on Crystal Mountain. As the climb proceeds, Matthiessen charts his inner path as well as his outer one, with a deepening Buddhist understanding of reality, suffering, impermanence, and beauty. This Penguin Classics edition features an introduction by acclaimed travel writer and novelist Pico Iyer.

For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,700 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.

Review:

In the autumn of 1973, the writer Peter Matthiessen set out in the company of zoologist George Schaller on a hike that would take them 250 miles into the heart of the Himalayan region of Dolpo, "the last enclave of pure Tibetan culture on earth." Their voyage was in quest of one of the world's most elusive big cats, the snow leopard of high Asia, a creature so rarely spotted as to be nearly mythical; Schaller was one of only two Westerners known to have seen a snow leopard in the wild since 1950.

Published in 1978, The Snow Leopard is rightly regarded as a classic of modern nature writing. Guiding his readers through steep-walled canyons and over tall mountains, Matthiessen offers a narrative that is shot through with metaphor and mysticism, and his arduous search for the snow leopard becomes a vehicle for reflections on all manner of matters of life and death. In the process, The Snow Leopard evolves from an already exquisite book of natural history and travel into a grand, Buddhist-tinged parable of our search for meaning. By the end of their expedition, having seen wolves, foxes, rare mountain sheep, and other denizens of the Himalayas, and having seen many signs of the snow leopard but not the cat itself, Schaller muses, "We've seen so much, maybe it's better if there are some things that we don't see."

That sentiment, as well as the sense of wonder at the world's beauty that pervades Matthiessen's book, ought to inform any journey into the wild. --Gregory McNamee

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