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The Snow Leopard by Peter Matthiessen
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's review
Nov 22, 2009

liked it
Read in December, 2009 — I own a copy

Peter M. has a way with words. Some of his descriptions are magical. But two things get in the way. One is that he seems to say that he was high (not in the altitudinous sense) throughout the trip, and did not enjoy coming down. This, in a travel writer, from whom we require truth above everything else, is a negative: what was real? The other is that he is overly attached to mysticism. He seems to not know what is, ultimately, obvious: he is the core of the story and the rest is dross. Yes, we should try to live in the moment. Yes, we should accept what is. Ho Hum. What did you do in Tibet? How did you Make It Through?? Tukten is Peter M.'s center of the book, but - he is never explained. I can't explain why Tukten is never really investigated but he seems to be more interesting than those sheep, or for that matter the leopard. And yet - nothing but a statement of the mysterious. And yet, for what it does describe, I liked the book, and was amazed at the endless stamina of the protagonists, and their ability to be in such foreign surroundings.

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