Finding Jim

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Press: RMB | Rocky Mountain Books (September 23, 2013)
Author Name:Oakey-Baker, Susan


Finding Jim describes Susan Oakey-Bakers struggle to confront the realities of life after the death of her husband, renowned mountain guide Jim Haberl, the first Canadian to summit the most difficult mountain in the world: K2. 
For fifteen years they had spent time adventuring together around the world: skiing the Himalaya, rafting in Nepal and mountaineering in North America.
In time, they got married, solidified a home for themselves in Whistler, British Columbia, and planned on starting a family.
But the future Susan had imagined was not meant to be, and when Jim was killed in an avalanche in the University Range of Wrangell-St.
Elias National Park in Alaska, she was faced with a loss greater than anything she ever could have expected.After Jims death, Susan spent time retracing the adventures they took together, in a desperate and obsessive attempt to gather and hold on to as many memories of him as she could.
She travelled to the place in Alaska where he lost his life; searched the Queen Charlotte Islands where they had first met; trekked to the top of Mount Kilimanjaro where they had journeyed the year before his death; and scoured the hills around their Whistler home for traces of the man she had expected to spend the rest of her life with.In the spirit of books like Joan DidionsThe Year of Magical Thinking and Maria Coffeys Fragile Edge, Susan Oakey-Baker writes eloquently of her efforts to relive and reanalyze her husband's death, to defy the pain that such a loss causes and embrace the healing power of mountains, adventure and wilderness as she reimagines her new life.


Sports & Outdoors,Mountaineering,Mountain Climbing,Self-Help,Death & Grief,Grief & Bereavement,Biographies & Memoirs,Travelers & Explorers

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Comment List (Total:15)

  •     A must read for any one who appreciates a well crafted book and an amazing true journey of life. Sue Oakey-Baker paints vivid pictures with words, she captured my attention from the first page and held me tight to the last. The author shows much courage in opening her heart wide and sharing her most personal story of life.At a young age and on the brink of so many hopes and dreams being fulfilled with the love of her life besides her, she suddenly in the most tragic of circumstances finds it cruelly snatched away. She takes us through the depths of despair to redemption and the final realization that death and loss is the non negotiable part of life. But that love can be reborn, if you can accept that it is the only way to continue forward and fully live again.It will surely give hope to many who find themselves faced with overwhelming loss and grief. But also for those of us who relish outdoors activities, who love the mountains and understand the joys and challenges they offer. The many wonders of nature here right on our doorstep in B.C. and around the world as Sue retraces so many adventures. This book is going to be a best seller, definitely not to be missed.
  •     This is a powerful book! I had to often put the book aside then pick it up again , there is so much emotion. This bookHas been shared with my friends as well as family. I can recommend it as an outstanding memoir and an exceptionally well-written story of grieving and recovery.Char Olson
  •     Sue's beautiful book is destined to help others work through their own grief journeys. Her compelling stories of struggling and healing demonstrate the strength of the human spirit and its amazing capacity for renewal. Sue's voice is strong and immediate as she takes you through a tough journey to a new life. Finding Jim is a story of a beautiful relationship, epic outdoor adventures, as well as a trip to the bottom of grief and back. A book I will long remember.
  •     I started to read 'Finding Jim' one evening, and once started, immediately put aside the other book I was half-way thru. "Finding Jim" was a book that I found hard to put down."Finding Jim" is about finding yourself in the most difficult of circumstances. Oakey-Baker turns her story into every person's story. As a a reader I was captivated from beginning to end. Without being overwhelmed by sentiment, I felt I was given a window on grief and recovery that exceeds anything I have come across before. I was struck by her skill at bringing the story alive to the reader. Equally, I thoroughly enjoyed the style of writing and use of language. I was impressed again and again by how she captures a situation or element, e.g. 'slippery seafood' and 'sweaty-sock smell of fresh cheeses', to name only two simple but perfect examples. Oakey-Baker has an exceptional talent at using language to capture emotions ' -- even the most difficult.
  •     This book takes the reader on an incredible journey. Finding love, loosing it, and learning to love again.
  •     I found this book immensely readable, moving and inspirational. Sue has written about her journey through grieving with honesty, tenderness and courage. Beautiful to read.
  •     Finding Jim is one of those compelling, 'can't put it down' reads that draws in the reader by tackling the universal themes of loss and renewal.
  •     Sometimes the heart breaks. Something Sue Oakey-Baker knows well. Her husband, Jim, a renown climber, was the first Canadian to summit K2.
  •     Although this book contains more than its share of tragedy, sadness and loss, ultimately I think it is a story of love and hope. Once I started reading it, I couldn't put it down and my emotions ran the full gamut all the way through. Sue navigates through very intense personal feelings and experiences sensitively and lovingly. Her writing style helped put me the reader in her shoes through all the things she has been through on this journey. I really loved this book and think it's a powerful tribute to Jim as well as the love they shared together.
  •     This is a well written, honest account of the author's struggle to regain her sense of self after the sudden loss of her husband in a climbing accident, at a relatively young age.
  •     I started this book on a long plane ride only knowing I was in for a very personal story. A few hours later I felt I was a different person.
  •     Heartbreaking love story written by a fascinating woman and guide
  •     Susan Oakley-Baker has poured out her insides for this gut-wrenching and beautiful book covering her very personal story of loving, losing that love, and loving again.She lets us all in on her private struggles, her internal eruptions of unfiltered emotions, and the constant stream of mental negotiations that occupy one's thoughts when a loss is so raw.She takes us along on the trepidatious journey to attempt to come to terms with her loss, and shows her strength with the courage it takes to move on past the impossible.I don't climb real mountains or spend freezing nights camping on the sides of them, and I didn't have to in order to understand and cheer for Sue's real and metaphorical summits.
  •     A very moving book.
  •     They're lots of stories that end with survivors returning from the summit. FINDING JIM tells the other story -- what happens when someone does not come back from their adventure.

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