Read Escape from Kathmandu by Kim Stanley Robinson Online


Living in the city of Kathmandu in the Kingdom of Nepal are dozens of American and British expatriates who are in love with the Himalayas. George Fergusson is one of them--he works as a trek guide for "Take You Higher, Ltd.", leading groups of tourists into the back country and occasionally assisting on serious climbs. George "Freds" Fredericks is another--a tall, easy-goiLiving in the city of Kathmandu in the Kingdom of Nepal are dozens of American and British expatriates who are in love with the Himalayas. George Fergusson is one of them--he works as a trek guide for "Take You Higher, Ltd.", leading groups of tourists into the back country and occasionally assisting on serious climbs. George "Freds" Fredericks is another--a tall, easy-going American who converted to Buddhism while in college. He visited Nepal one year and never went home.The adventures started when George and Freds got together over the capture of a Yeti--an abominable snowman--by a scientific expedition. The thought of such a wild and mysterious creature in captivity--in prison--was too much for them to bear. And in freeing the Yeti, a great partnership was born. George and Freds will go on to greater heights as they explore the mysteries of Nepal, from Shangri-La to Kathmandu's governmental bureaucracy.Contents:Escape from Kathmandu (1986)Mother Goddess of the World (1987)The True Nature of Shangri-La (1989)The Kingdom Underground (1990)...

Title : Escape from Kathmandu
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780812500592
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 314 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Escape from Kathmandu Reviews

  • Charles
    2019-01-12 12:15

    Stuff I Read - Escape from Kathmandu by Kim Stanley Robinson ReviewSo I read the first section of this book in the Best of Kim Stanley Robinson collection, and I was charmed by the zany story of these people in Kathmandu having crazy adventures. Jimmy Carter. A Yeti. Evil naturalists and some really weird stuff punctuated by booze and boredom. If it had been all of that I probably would have liked it more. But while the adventures are all rather odd and have some really hilarious action to them, they begin to get a little strained as the book keeps going. The first two stories I quite enjoyed, but the third was a little bit not as pleasant and then the last one didn't quite hit me the same way.I suppose what I liked about it was the fun. There are some really weird things that happen in this book. There's the Yeti in the first part. In the second Freds and George are climing Everest with a reincarnated Buddhist lama. But even in the second part I was started to get a little uncomfortable with some of it. Especially the annoying documentary guy was just...well, he doesn't really get what's coming to him. He's creepy and abusive and keeps filming the one female climber without her permission and he basically gets away with it. He does. And that was...disappointing. The third story brings Freds and George (who become the main characters) off on an adventure to prevent a road from being built. And that's when it sort of lost me a bit. The writing is still solid, and Freds is always fun. But...Well, at that point George really stops having fun. In the first story he's having fun, and then in the second a little less, and then by this one he's really just being tortured. He endures some really bad sickness and then the crippling bureaucracy of Nepal and then it all just doesn't work. It was hard to read because the fun disappeared. It was similarly gone in the fourth story, and I'm not sure if it's because the stories are just a bit less crazy or if it's because the focus shifts to something that's a bit more serious, namely the state of Nepal and how George and Freds and all are basically leeching off of a situation that for most of the people involved is terrible. The book does circle around that idea and shows that the characters aren't exactly saints, but then I'm not really sure how it comes down in the end.Because the ending is just sort of "status quo upheld." And George and Freds will...just continue I guess. I'm really not sure what happens, or how I'm supposed to take the ending, because up to a point if it's just a fun series of stories, then okay. But if this is about something deeper, about the situation in Nepal or Tibet and how the corruption there is allowed to continue because it's help up by foreign money, then...what were the first two stories with a Yeti and climbing Everest. It just doesn't jive well for me. I mean, I liked it, but certainly not as much as I could have. For me, it provides some good laughs, but I was left a bit cold on parts. A 6.25/10 for me.

  • Alex
    2019-01-19 08:18

    This one goes too far at times, which is why I'm on the fence. I loved parts of it- but at other times the situations crossed from ridiculously funny to just plain ridiculous. If you are in the mood for a yarn about a Bigfoot wearing a Dodgers cap being snuck through a hotel lobby under the noses of gov't agents on the hunt for him - then you've come to the right place. It is a silly place to be sure - and silly works better in some of the stories than others. Maybe it needs you to sustain silly expectations yourself- if I'd gone into this one thinking I was going to read Douglas Adams-like material I'd have been much better off. Robinson seems most at ease when his characters find themselves drinking in bars - and that isn't a bad thing. When this one works it is a lot of fun- and when it doesn't you'll roll your eyes and groan.

  • Andrea
    2019-01-06 04:52

    I read this book while I was volunteering at an orphanage in Kathmandu, and I loved it from the first page. Nepal is a magical place; Kim Stanley Robinson captures its essence in these interconnected stories. There's a yeti. There's a monk who can sleep outside in the snow without getting cold. There's a secret city underneath the streets of Kathmandu. Having lived in Kathmandu for several months, I needed only the slightest suspension of disbelief to accept these phenomena. But anyone who's stayed in the Thamel district of Kathmandu knows that the real fantasy element is the consistent hot water George has in his hotel shower... I love this book; it makes me homesick for Nepal. Cold water and all.

  • Jessica
    2019-01-03 12:05

    I love this book. It's one of my favorite's from Robinson because it has so much humor to it. This is the second time I have read it, and I still got weird looks from my husband as I literally was laughing out loud at parts. I recommend this one hundred percent.For fans of video games, I did a short write up for my blog on how this book perfectly compliments Far Cry 4. Check if out, if you are interested:

  • Tori
    2019-01-16 09:58

    Ok I was wrong, there were four parts. The first one was the funniest by far. The rest are more adventure, less comedy but still comical. Having no background knowledge on the subject, I had fun with it. I read it 20 odd years ago, I remembered it and I enjoyed it again. That should say everything.

  • Theresa Dunn
    2019-01-10 11:17

    One of the funniest books ever....though I read it ages ago.

  • Athena
    2019-01-11 11:08

    Kim Stanley Robinson is primarily known as a science fiction writer, but that category doesn’t fit all of his work. Escape from Kathmandu can best described as a surrealistic fantasy. It is a collection of four linked novelas, Escape from Kathmandu, Mother Goddess of the World, The True Nature of Shangri-La, and The Kingdom Underground, and tells the story and the adventures of two Americans, George and Freds, who have fallen in love with the Himalayas. They both are now semi-permanent residents of Kathmandu and they work as tour guides for mountaineers and tourists.As in almost all Robinson’s novels, the environment and the wilderness has a pervasive presence in all four stories. He looks at the impact and behaviour of people and how they relate to the physical world and he examines our intimate relationship with landscape, by shaping it and being shaped by it. In an effort to define what constitutes human nature, Robinson also touches on a lot of religious, buddhism in particular, and political issues, such a bureaucracy and corruption.Escape from Kathmandu is surprisingly funny, comical at times, a bit didactic, and more relaxing than Robinson’s later stories. It is absolutely delightful.

  • Carole
    2019-01-10 11:59

    so odd it was delightful and saying this it is NOT my typical type of book.

  • Miles
    2018-12-31 05:53

    Early Kim Stanley Robinson--fun, but definitely young.

  • reherrma
    2019-01-21 06:05

    Der passionierte Bergsteiger Kim Stanley Robinson legt mit diesem Episodenroman (4 Novellen) eine seinter homorvollsten Arbeiten vor. Ausgangspunkt des Buches ist ein Backpacker-Hotel in Kathmandu, in der die Helden der vier Novellen einige Briefe hinterlassen haben, die von unglaublichen Abenteuern erzählen.Unter den vielen Träumern, Aussteigern und Idealisten finden sich auch die zwei Helden des Episodenromans: George Fergusson und Fred Fredericks, die sich als Trekking-Führer ihren Lebensunterhalt in Nepal verdienen.In der grandios-verrückten Novelle "Flucht aus Katmandu" retten sie einen leibhaftigen Yeti davor, in einem Privatzoo als Versuchskaninchen zu enden, indem sie ihn als USA-Tourist, dem Jimmy Carter die Hand schüttelt (er ist das Felsgesicht auf dem Titelgemälde), ausgeben und außer Landes schmuggeln.Sie besteigen den höchsten Berg der Erde, die "Mutter Göttin der Welt" (Chomolungma), um einem Tulku, der Reinkarnation eines früheren Lama, seinen Weg zu einem Guru aus eigenem Anrecht zu öffnen. Und so ganz nebenbei gelingt es ihnen noch, den legendären Engländer, der in den 20er Jahren bei einer Everest-Expedition tödlich verunglückte, vor einer letzten Ruhestätte in der Westminster Abbey zu bewahren. (Mallorys Leiche wurde 1999 tatsächlich am Everest entdeckt.)Auf der Suche nach der "wahren Natur von Shangri-La" gelingt es dem Duo entgegen allen bürokratischen Widerständen, den Bau einer Straße nach Shangri-La, der verborgenen Stadt Tibets, der geheimen Hochburg des tibetanischen Buddhismus, zu verhindern.Unsere Helden zetteln im "unterirdischen Könirgreich" bald einen Staatsstreich an, doch sie müssen erkennen, daß es zahlreiche unterirdische Regierungen auf der Welt gibt und daß sie uns vielleicht vor einem noch größeren Desaster bewahren, als wir eh schon in der Umwelt anrichten.Der trockene Humor, witzige und spritzige Einfälle erheitern den Leser auf nahezu jeder Seite dieser vier Novellen. Robinson öffnet einem die Augen für eine Welt, die fernab für die meisten von uns, noch als Plätz für Träume dienen kann. Doch nach dem Desaster am Everest 1996, (Jon Krakauer berichtete in seinem Bestseller "In eisige Höhen" darüber) ist der Himalaya auch der Ort für Alpträume. Doch jeder Berg-Enthusiast, der etwas für Abenteuergarn übrig hat, sollte sich dieses Buch reinziehen...

  • AdamMcPhee
    2019-01-11 05:01

    Four novellas about the Nepalese adventures of George and Freds, a mountaineering tour guide and his stoner buddy who knows the secrets of Shambhala. Escape from Kathmandu: George and Freds have to save a Yeti from being kidnapped by evil scientists looking to sell him to a corporation or something. Jimmy Carter gets involved. I first read it when it was collected inThe Best of Kim Stanley Robinson.Mother Goddess of the World: George and Freds team up with some Brits to scale Everest and stop an expedition from discovering the body of Mallory. But it turns out Freds has an ulterior motive, helping his tulku become a lama or something. There's a sleazy tv producer who works for PBS. Contains the requisite KSR hiking/mountaineering passage.The True Nature of Shangri-La: Freds reveals that Shambhala is a crappy little bordertown full of sick children and Yeti, and George is enlisted to help save them from an encroaching highway. After being stymied by the bureaucracy, they stage mortar attacks on the Nepalese and Chinese army bases. To their surprise (!), it sparks an international incident. The Kingdom Underground: George wants to help a development agency build a sewer in Kathmandu, but Freds reveals there is an ancient tunnel system under the city that can't be disturbed because it's being used by Shambhala's tibetan monks and Nepal's underground (get it?) democracy movement. Chaos ensues.The first two novellas are disappointing. They rely way too much on a sense of humour that KSR just doesn't have. Case in point: Freds doesn't seem at all conniving enough, and the producer doesn't come off as believably sleazy. It's because KSR is a utopian, and so he has trouble channelling peoples' vices. The second two novellas are a major improvement, because he's found an idealistic mission for George and Freds, and he's better able to come up with credible obstacles for them. The downside is that he bumps up against real world politics, but he comes up with a really neat solution, suggesting that magical underground democratic movements seem imaginary and implausible, but they exist everywhere people strive for a better world.

  • Daryl
    2019-01-07 05:55

    The half dozen or so books I've read by Kim Stanley Robinson have all been set in pretty interesting locales -- Mars, the moons of Jupiter, the edges of the solar system, Antarctica. This one takes place in Nepal, mostly in and around Kathmandu. It's four novellas, each one set shortly after the previous, and featuring the same major (and some minor) characters. I was a bit thrown by the third story, which is narrated by a different first-person narrator than the others. I had to keep reminding myself who the "I" in this case was. The book cover labels it "science fiction," though there's nothing very sci-fi about it. It's more fantasy, although it feels more like magical realism than fantasy to me. The first story is about the discovery of a living Yeti, and the second contains a surreptitious climb of Mount Everest, and the third centers around the village of Shambhala (Shangri-La) -- all very magical realist. I enjoyed this a bit less than most of the KSR books I've read, but he still maintains a high spot on my list of favorite SF/F writers.

  • Rob
    2019-01-13 06:10

    ...The tone of this novel is rather light. Some passages are comical, especially later on in the book, when Freds wonders what disaster George is luring him into this time. That surprised me a little to be honest. Robinson's works are usually full of quite heavy scientific and sociological themes and while this novel doesn't lack that entirely, it is a much more relaxed read than the previous books he published. Robinson touches on a lot of sociological, religious and political issues in this book but where in most of his novels the characters are deeply involved in these issues, George and Freds pick more limited, immediately pressing causes. As such, it offers the readers more of a choice to about how much to invest in this book...Full Random Comments review

  • Isabel (kittiwake)
    2019-01-07 08:20

    Ex-pat American George Fergusson is staying in a Kathmandu hotel until it is time for him to lead his next trek. Inquisitively opening a letter addressed to someone with a similar name to him else that has been lying in the dead letter rack at his Kathmandu hotel for months leads him into adventure when the sender of the letter turns up at the hotel, desperately looking for his friend George Frederick. I have just listened to this novella on StarShipSofa. It is fun and exciting with a bit of suspense and a cool, calm and collected yeti. Recommended. I must look for a copy of the book "Escape from Kathmandu", which also contains several novellas featuring the further adventures of George and Freds in Nepal as I am sure that they will be just as much fun to read.

  • Leigh-ann
    2019-01-19 05:06

    I don't really consider this book to be Science Fiction... it's more "Fantasy". Robinson has written 4 novellas (or long short stories), about "George" and "Freds", who become friends after meeting as tourists and climbers in the Himalayas. Together they look for a Yeti, look for the body of Mallory, try to save "Shangri-La", climb mountains, and almost overthrow the government of Nepal. The stories are inter-related, but could stand on their own. They book is quite humourous and fairly light reading... I have to assume this was one of Robinson's first books. I don't know if I would have enjoyed it as much without my long-standing interest in climbing and Everest, so your enjoyment may vary depending on what you like to read about.

  • Henri Moreaux
    2019-01-15 04:53

    I don't recall how I ended up buying this book, I think it may have been mentioned in another book I was reading late 2015. At any rate, reading the blurb it sounds like a bizarre book and a waste of time.It is however, actually quite interesting and has many an imaginative scene. I especially enjoyed the descriptions of Shangri-La and the tunnel systems, the tunnel rail chase also brought back memories of childhood novels & movies. All very pleasing.The book has four sections, the first being the most fantastical about saving a Yeti from being exploited the latter three being of a more serious nature. There's also a pretty good description of a Mount Everest climb early on.Worth a look if you come across it, don't be deterred by the outlandish blurb.

  • Jim
    2019-01-14 11:16

    Enjoyable collection of four stories by Kim Stanley Robinson, American science fiction author, born in 1952. These stories are set in Nepal and are based on his experiences in Nepal. He actually did a trek to the Everest Base Camp.The four stories focus on two American expatriates living in Nepal and in these stories they encounter a yeti, go for the summit of Mt. Everest, and seek the enchanted valley of Shangri-La.Hardest of all, they get involved in a battle with the Nepalese bureaucracy, a discouraging fight to be sure, harder even than climbing Everest.

  • Joe
    2019-01-16 08:06

    This book was a best seller back along and it is in a lighter genre than the usual Nepal Guidebook. I read it while I was in Nepal on my third trip there. The author has a wonderful sense of the ridiculous and a great sense of humor.... but there are kernels of truth about the country m the customs, the culture and the people, which make this a really fun read for anybody contemplating travel to Nepal. In particular, the part where he describes the bureaucracy is maddeningly accurate. It's a loosely collected set of stories and lots of fun....

  • Patrick
    2019-01-12 06:14

    I think I want to like Kim Stanley Robinson more than I actually do. He fights the good fight for genre fiction, he is formidably intelligent, he writes with authority about this world of climbers and hippies bumming around Nepal. The commitment to craft is evident throughout. Unfortunately this fix-up collection features underdeveloped and/or unlikeable characters making absurd choices amidst increasingly absurd situations. The humor falls flat. The environmentalist message falls flat. Kim Stanley Robinson, why must you disappoint me so!P.S.Icehenge WAS great, though.

  • William
    2019-01-12 07:04

    I love Kim Stanley Robinson and have read almost everything he has ever written. The style I love is here but I found the theme a bit less interesting than his other stories. The apparent level of research and understanding in most of Kim Stanley Robinson's books is stunning but here things seemed fantastical. Part of the charm of The Mars Trilogy and other works is the dreaming and predictions about the future that are amazingly, logically consistent. In this book however, the imaginative additions went too far to feel well supported. That just takes the edge off of the story for me.

  • Kelly
    2019-01-07 05:57

    I borrowed this from a guesthouse in Nepal right before we arrived in Kathmandu to get an idea of the city we were heading to. The characters are too boastful and dishonest to feel any compassion for, the scenarios are impossibly far-fetched (oh, you're hiding the abominable snowman in your room from Jimmy Carter's secret service? Right...), and the writing itself is nothing to get excited about.

  • Ahimsa
    2019-01-24 04:21

    This book was really great fun. The 80's setting was perfect (though truthfully not that much has changed) and each story was highly entertaining. Every writer I know thinks about fun stories set in countries they're travelling in, but rarely have I seen it pulled off this well.

  • Melody Rudenko
    2019-01-12 04:57

    Read most of this collection on a long cold night holed up in a tent in one hell of a snow storm. Most of the short stories are full of light hearted jokes. I'd recommend taking this book with you on your next adventure. Especially if it's to somewhere cold.

  • Cissa
    2019-01-24 12:09

    I just love this book. I've re-read it several times now, and it always makes me happy. The blend of the matter-of-fact with the mythical/legendary is seamlessly done, the humor is wonderful, and even though realistically I know I would not like Katmandu at all, it makes me long to go there!

  • Kathy
    2018-12-28 07:17

    A very interesting way to portray the Nepali government (or lack there of) from an American perspective, however, the outlandish situations that the characters get themselves into is what held my interest. A really fun read.

  • Brenda
    2018-12-30 05:20

    Story within a story, unfortunately I found it boring and too long, it would have been great had it ended sooner

  • Tamar Anderson
    2019-01-07 04:55


  • Peter
    2019-01-22 09:15

    Page turner.

  • John
    2019-01-18 05:08

    Very fun set of interrelated short adventure stories.

  • Claire
    2019-01-06 07:00

    Quite good.