A Man’s Life: Dispatched From Dangerous Places

Mark Jenkins

Mark Jenkins’ 2002 book The Hard Way is a compelling compilation of stories of his life as an 8,000-meter mountain climber, mountain biker and adventure seeker. Jenkins has returned with a second captivating collection of columns from his regular gig at Outdoors Magazine in A Man’s Life: Dispatches From Dangerous Places. Jenkins’ tales once again take us, quite literally, to the ends of the earth in search of adventure, pushing the limits of his physical capabilities. Only this time, he does so through a different lens: that of a husband and father of two. While he’s no closer to flirting with his own mortality, he’s clearly cognizant of (and less comfortable with) placing his life at risk. The end result doesn’t suffer, however, but only adds more depth. His prose is still razor-sharp, his technical knowledge spot-on and his ability to inspire never more prevalent, and chapters with titles like “Risk, Mortality, Vanishing” and “Into the War Zone” contain everything you might think they would. Few authors (or humans, for that matter) would ever put themselves in these situations. Jenkins does, though, and we truly benefit from it.