K2 is one of the most demanding mountaineering challenges in the world and is one of the most treacherous. Extreme, unpredictable weather and the accurately difficult climbing conditions test the technique, endurance and psychological strength of the most experienced mountaineers to the limit - and often beyond.
Many of the men and women who have sought to reach the summit have failed, often with tragic consequences - over 70 have died or disappeared. Yet this, the second highest mountain on Earth, continues to exercise a special - all too often lethal - attraction, and this is the subject of Richard Sale's fascinating new book. As he traces the climbing history of K2 over the last 150 years, he shows in graphic detail how it acquired its awesome reputation; it was during the first serious attempts on the summit in the 1930s and 1950s that K2 became known as the savage mountain.