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End of the Rope

Mountains, Marriage and Motherhood

List Price: $26.00

ON SALE: May 8, 2018 | Hardcover | 6 x 9, 344 pages | ISBN 9781640090309
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In the tradition of Cheryl Strayed’s Wild comes this funny and gritty debut memoir in which Jan Redford grows from a nomadic rock climber to a mother who fights to win back her future.

After the love of her life is killed in an avalanche, a grieving Jan finds comfort in the arms of his climbing buddy, an extreme alpinist. But their marriage soon falters. While her husband logs forests and dreams of distant peaks, Jan has children, and takes on a wife’s traditional role. Over the following years, however, she pursues her own dream, one that pits her against her husband—attending university, and ultimately, gaining independence.

End of the Rope is Jan’s telling of heart-stopping adventures, from a harrowing rescue off El Capitan to leading a group of bumbling cadets across a glacier. It is her laughter-filled memoir of learning to climb, and of friendships with women in that masculine world. Most moving, this is her story of claiming freedom from a crushing marriage, an act of bravery equal to climbing mountains.

About Jan Redford

JAN REDFORD lives with her family in British Columbia, where she mountain bikes, trail runs, climbs and skis. Her stories, articles and personal essays have been published in The Globe and MailNational PostMountain LifeExplore and various anthologies. She is a graduate of The Writer’s Studio at Simon Fraser University and holds a master’s in creative writing from University of British Columbia.


Praise for End of the Rope

“With a wonderful combination of adventure and introspection, outdoor writer Redford tells of a life lived on the fringes of society and in the heights of the Banff mountains in British Columbia . . . Redford’s is a truly inspiring and honest account of what it means to be a strong woman who can reach new heights because she isn’t afraid to fall.” —Publishers Weekly

“Compassionate and courageous, End of the Rope shows us that there are many types of bravery required, not just in the wilderness, but in surviving day to day life.” —Tanis Rideout, author of Above All Things

“In this scrappy memoir of love, loss, and mountaineering, Jan Redford gracefully explores a familiar midlife quandary: how to balance safety with adventure.” —Ada Calhoun, author of Wedding Toasts I’ll Never Give

“An adventure memoir with one foot firmly planted in the realities of life while the other soars high on a rock wall.” —Tom Beans, Dudley’s Bookshop Cafe (Bend, OR)

“Cheryl Strayed meets Elizabeth Gilbert on a journey through the realities of a life as a young Canadian woman tries to sort out a workable lifestyle as a girlfriend in the hardcore climbing culture. Her boyfriend goes to Alaska and dies in a tragic avalanche on Mount Foraker on his first Alaskan summit attempt. Jan attaches herself to a sympathetic climbing junkie and soon finds herself with a baby, trying to extricate herself from Mr. Wrong and start over again on a new tangent. Jan is tough and determined and attracted to the lifestyle but realizes it’s an impractical choice for a single mom. A very readable and honest book about Redford’s path through the life of outdoor adrenaline sports.” —Lee, Homer Bookstore (Homer, AK)

Praise for Jan Redford’s essays

“Some highlights of the book are…. the brutally honest story, “End of the Rope”, by Jan Redford. Redford’s stark account of a young climber’s mistakes on the walls of Yosemite, and similarly in life, recount youth’s delusion of infallibility and what it means to learn the hard way.” —Joanna Croston, Highline Magazine, review of the anthology Rock, Paper, Fire: The Best of Mountain and Wilderness Writing

“This precisely observed piece about faltering faith and the confusion that goes along with growing up has stayed with me. The odd logic of the adolescent explorer and the secret yearnings of the not-so-grown up were rendered in a voice that was deceptively simple and completely captivating.” —Susan Juby, author of Nice Recovery


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