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Great Alpine Traverse

READING AND TRAVEL GUIDE

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Books for

Enrich your travels with reading! Here's a hand-picked list prepared for your journey in conjunction with the book experts at Longitude.

Essential Reading

Item EXALP48. Buy these 4 items as a set for $66 including shipping, 15% off the retail price.
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Killing Dragons, The Conquest of the Alps

Killing Dragons, The Conquest of the Alps

by Fergus Fleming

  • EXPLORATION
  • 2001
  • PAPER
  • 398 PAGES

Fleming spins lively tales of man against nature in this entertaining history of the eccentrics, adventurers and publicity-hounds who sought to conquer the Alps, including Whymper and his first ascent of the Matterhorn (where four of the seven-man team perished). (ALP16, $14.00)

La Place de la Concorde Suisse

La Place de la Concorde Suisse

by John McPhee

  • CULTURAL PORTRAIT
  • 1994
  • PAPER
  • 150 PAGES

McPhee deploys his usual insight and wonderful prose on the phenomenon of the Switzerland army to present an irreverent portrait of Switzerland and the Swiss mindset. (SWZ14, $16.00)

Insight Guide Switzerland

Insight Guide Switzerland

by Insight Guides

  • GUIDEBOOK
  • 2009
  • PAPER
  • 368 PAGES

This handsome guide gives a profusely illustrated overview of Switzerland, featuring concise essays by well-regarded authors on history, politics and culture, as well as hundreds of photos and maps and other practical information. (SWZ15, $24.99)

Alps Map

Alps Map

by Freytag & Berndt

  • 2010
  • MAP

This regional map (1:500,000), centered on the Alps, includes portions of Austria, Slovenia, Italy, Switzerland, Germany and France. (ALP07, $14.95)

 
Eyewitness Guide Austria

Eyewitness Guide Austria


by Eyewitness Guides

  • GUIDEBOOK
  • 2014
  • PAPER
  • 380 PAGES

This superb guide to all of Austria features color photography, dozens of excellent local maps and a region-by-region synopsis of the country's attractions. (AST59, $25.00)

Walking in the Alps

Walking in the Alps


by Kev Reynolds

  • GUIDEBOOK
  • 2000
  • PAPER
  • 496 PAGES
  • CURRENTLY UNAVAILABLE
  • >

A nicely illustrated, authoritative guide to hiking throughout the Alps. Reynolds covers a range of activities from day hikes to the classic hut-to-hut mountain walks. (SWZ44, $22.95)

A Nervous Splendor, Vienna 1888-1889

A Nervous Splendor, Vienna 1888-1889


by Frederic Morton

  • HISTORY
  • 1980
  • PAPER
  • 340 PAGES

A portrait of Vienna at the end of the 19th century, this book focuses on Crown Prince Rudolph, his devastating suicide and the rich texture of gossip and daily life at the Habsburg Court. (AST16, $17.00)

The Habsburgs, Embodying Empire

The Habsburgs, Embodying Empire


by Andrew Wheatcroft

  • HISTORY
  • 1995
  • PAPER
  • 384 PAGES

With skillful scholarship and engaging style, Wheatcroft reveals the history of this family of eccentric monarchs. (AST11, $18.00)

Why Switzerland?

Why Switzerland?


by Jonathan Steinberg

  • CULTURAL PORTRAIT
  • 1996
  • PAPER
  • 300 PAGES

A masterly overview of the idiosyncrasies of Switzerland, its history, language, politics and identity as a naysayer at the center of Europe. (SWZ04, $39.99)

Baroque and Rococo Art

Baroque and Rococo Art


by Germain Bazin

  • ART & ARCHITECTURE
  • 1985
  • PAPER
  • 288 PAGES

An excellent illustrated survey of Baroque and Rococo art and architecture, this volume in the acclaimed "World of Art" series is a good companion to the golden age of Middle Europe. (EUR53, $21.95)

Cathedrals and Castles, The Cathedral Builders of the Middle Ages

Cathedrals and Castles, The Cathedral Builders of the Middle Ages


by Alain Erlande-Brandenburg

  • ART & ARCHITECTURE
  • 2010
  • PAPER
  • 175 PAGES
  • BEST SELLER

This pocket-size encyclopedia of the art, architecture and culture of the Middle Ages features hundreds of drawings, color illustrations and a brief chronology. (MED07, $15.95)

Eiger Dreams, Ventures Among Men and Mountains

Eiger Dreams, Ventures Among Men and Mountains


by Jon Krakauer

  • EXPLORATION
  • 2009
  • PAPER
  • 192 PAGES

A collection of some of Krakauer's (Into Thin Air) best journalism, these stories and essays focus on the mindset and determination of world-class mountaineers, including Alpine and Himalayan climbers. (ALP10, $14.95)

Iceman: Uncovering the Life and Times of a Prehistoric Man Found in an Alpine Glacier

Iceman: Uncovering the Life and Times of a Prehistoric Man Found in an Alpine Glacier


by Brenda Fowler

  • ARCHAEOLOGY
  • 2001
  • PAPER
  • 313 PAGES

The complete story of the discovery of and controversy surrounding the frozen corpse of a prehistoric man found in the Tyrolian Alps. (ALP20, $22.50)

Klimt

Klimt


by Frank Whitford

  • ART & ARCHITECTURE
  • 1990
  • PAPER
  • 216 PAGES

This superb volume in the acclaimed "World of Art" series is fully illustrated with 159 photos and drawings along with 29 large, full-color plates of Gustav Klimt's major works: paintings, interior design and graphic art. (AST12, $18.95)

White Spider, The Classic Account of the Ascent of the Eiger

White Spider, The Classic Account of the Ascent of the Eiger


by Heinrich Harrer

  • EXPLORATION
  • 1998
  • PAPER
  • 364 PAGES

The classic tale of a young climber and the first ascent of the north face of the Eiger in 1938. This edition includes photographs, maps and a chronology of attempts on the north face. (ALP09, $15.95)

Mozart, A Life

Mozart, A Life


by Maynard Solomon

  • BIOGRAPHY/MEMOIR
  • 2006
  • PAPER
  • 640 PAGES

Solomon's celebrated biography tears down the "eternal child" Mozart myth, bringing to life the psychological depth of the musical genius. The book also illustrates life in 18th-century Salzburg. (AST06, $22.95)

The Story of the Trapp Family Singers

The Story of the Trapp Family Singers


by Maria von Trapp

  • BIOGRAPHY/MEMOIR
  • 2001
  • PAPER
  • 312 PAGES
  • HARD TO FIND ELSEWHERE

The true story of the von Trapp family singers, as remembered by Maria von Trapp herself. Maria was indeed a novice nun, but there ends her resemblance to the Julie Andrews' character in the Sound of Music. (AST47, $15.99)

A Farewell to Arms

A Farewell to Arms


by Ernest Hemingway

  • LITERATURE
  • 1995
  • PAPER
  • 332 PAGES

Set in snowy Switzerland and the rainy Italian Lake Country during World War I, this semi-autobiographical novel chronicles the romance between a British nurse and an American ambulance driver. (ITL384, $16.00)

Homestead

Homestead


by Rosini Lippi

  • LITERATURE
  • 1999
  • PAPER
  • 210 PAGES

Set firmly in a small village in the Austrian Alps, these 12 interlinking stories are almost ethnographic in their rich detail of small town life. The stories range from the turn-of-the-century to the present, accurately charting change in the remote village. (ALP11, $13.95)

Hotel du Lac

Hotel du Lac


by Anita Brookner

  • LITERATURE
  • 1995
  • PAPER
  • 184 PAGES

Funny, stylish and spellbinding, Brookner's novel tracks the story of a romance novelist seeking evasive peace and quiet at the luxurious Hotel du Lac in Switzerland. (SWZ05, $14.95)

La Nouvelle Heloise

La Nouvelle Heloise


by Jean-Jacques Rousseau

  • LITERATURE
  • 1989
  • PAPER
  • 421 PAGES

Rousseau may be best known for his political philosophy, but in this novel we see his softer side. This is the passionate story told through the letters of two lovers in a small town at the foot of the Alps. (SWZ19, $34.95)

More Recommendations

Here are some other groups of books that might be of interest

Longitude provides recommended reading for travelers in partnership with the leading tour operators and travel programs for hundreds of destinations worldwide. We've got the classic, new and hard-to-find books and maps to help you get the most out of your adventures.