Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

Tiger of the Snows - Tenzing Norgay: The Boy whose Dream was Everest

Tiger of the Snows - Tenzing Norgay: The Boy whose Dream was Everest

Robert Burleigh
Illustrator:   Ed Young 
Nonfiction Picture Book
For ages 7 to 10
Simon and Schuster, 2006   ISBN: 978-0689830426

When he was a little boy and tending the yaks in the valleys of the Himalayas, Tenzing Norgay chose to look up at the great peaks and to dream that one day he might be the one to scale the greatest mountain of all – Everest. As he grew into manhood he worked hard to prepare himself for a life as a climber. He “carried stones in his knapsack” and “apprenticed himself to death and danger” until he became one of the best Sherpa climbers there was.

Then at last the time came and on May 29th, 1953, Tenzing Norgay and Edmund Hillary made the last climb to the very top of Everest. At last Tenzing Norgay was able to see “the top of the world,” the place that he had dreamed about so many times in his boyhood.

This is a beautiful and moving tribute to a man who was able to live his dream and whose name is often forgotten when people talk about that first remarkable ascent of Everest. There can be no doubt that without his invaluable Sherpa guide and climbing partner, Edmund Hillary would not have succeeded in his bid to climb mountain. For thousands of Asians Tenzing Norgay became a hero and he gave many young people hope that they too would be able to reach for the highest peaks if they just worked at it hard enough.

Lyrical prose and truly stunning artwork combine here to create a book which young readers and collectors alike will cherish.