Blind Descent

Blind Descent

Book - 1998
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"Hands down, Anna Pigeon is the most complex protagonist in crime fiction," proclaimed the Philadelphia Inquirer of the heroine of last year's Endangered Species. "Barr possesses that rare combination of talents: she can write a beautiful sentence and she can create a first-rate mystery," said Publishers Weekly. In Blind Descent, Anna Pigeon faces personal demons as well as life-threatening dangers in an untamed underground wilderness for which neither training nor her love of the outdoors has prepared her.Lechuguilla Cavern is a man-eating cave discovered in New Mexico's Carlsbad Caverns National Park in the mid-1980s. Estimated to extend for more than three hundred miles, only ninety of them mapped, the cave was formed by acid burning away the limestone; corridors, pits, cramped wormholes, cliffs and splendid rooms the size of football fields tangle together in a maze shrouded in the utter darkness of the underground. When a fellow ranger is injured in a caving accident, Anna swallows her paralyzing fear of small spaces and descends into Lechuguilla to help a friend in need.Worse than the claustrophobia that haunts her are the signs-some natural, and some, more ominously, man-made-that not everyone is destined to emerge from this wondrous living tomb. All the skills Anna has honed in the terrestrial world are called into play on precipitous climbs, exhausting treks, and descents into canyons that have never seen the sun. The terrain is alien and hostile, the greed and destructive powers of mankind all too familiar. In this place of internal terrors, Anna must learn whom she can trust, and, in the end, decide who is to live and who is to die.
Publisher: New York :, G.P. Putnam's Sons,, [1998]
Copyright Date: ©1998
ISBN: 9780399143717
Branch Call Number: M BARR
Characteristics: 341 pages ; 24 cm


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Aug 05, 2020

***** five stars
This was my first Nevada Barr novel, and my introduction to Anna Pigeon, and I have to say it is still my favorite Anna P. novel, though I found them all very engaging. I love that Anna P. is a flawed heroine -- still somewhat dependent on alcohol, after her husband's death; and claustrophobic too -- which makes her so human and so easy to relate to. Blind Descent was totally exciting, as Nevada Barr described the long descent into a huge cave system to help rescue an old friend. She paints her environments in such rich detail she draws you into the story as if you were there. I hope Nevada Barr keeps creating the Anna P. novels.

Sep 23, 2019

I really enjoy Barr's books. This one is full of exciting adventure and memorable characters. The one thing I don't like is her tendency to refer to her characters by their first name, and then a few lines later, (or chapters later) refer to them by their last name. Who? All of her books have many characters, and this drives me nuts.

Apr 01, 2019

Anna Pigeon is a chronologically mature, but emotionally insecure member of the National Park Service. As we follow her through these first 6 books she begins to shed the armor of the grief over the loss of her husband and the burden of her emotional baggage from childhood.

Anna faces some more of her claustrophobic issues in this spelunking adventure which inevitably includes a few asides about life as a government employee caring for both the land and critters in our National Parks and the often selfish park visitors.

So many immature, unstable and greedy actors in this novel. And some characters are seeking inspiration for what will be next in their lives...professionally and personally. And what will happen with Anna's sister and Frederick...and what will Anna decide. I want to find out.

Sep 14, 2018

the first work of fiction i ever read or heard of on the art of spelunking. even though this is not the first of the series written about anna pigeon, i identified with her, especially after the last third of the book. nevada barr is not an author one needs to read, consecutively or sequentially.

Apr 20, 2015

An uncomfortable tale of cave diving, that is filled with claustrophobic detail. If you have a fear of closed in spaces, run from this book. Barr has great skill in pulling you in (and underground) that will leave you exhausted, crawling through dark, tight squeezed places with her usual vivid story telling. Her usual call to save nature, and National parks is the string that ties all her novels.

Jun 06, 2012

This is the very first Nevada Barr novel I have read. It wasnt what I expected. The side characters are a little forced, but Anna is a joy to read. The scenery description is amazing! I still apologize to the hodaghs when I curse.


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Apr 01, 2019

katboxjanitor thinks this title is suitable for 13 years and over


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