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Soaring in height to 29,029 feet (8,848 meters) above sea level, Mount Everest is a geographical giant. Ever since it was established that the mountain is indeed the tallest in the world humans have tried to tame it. The terrain is treacherous, the weather unpredictable, and the atmospheric conditions extreme; danger of injury, illness, delirium, and even death is ever present. Despite this, over the last 90 years, hundreds of men and women have attempted this perilous journey to the peak, and many have lived t only to tell the tale, but bask in the warm glory of the fame that this achievement naturally brings with it. But it is more than a quest for fame that drives ordinary people to undertake this most extraordinary challenge of all. For people like George Leigh Mallory and the men of his generation the challenge was t just personal, they were attempting to scale the mountain on behalf of humanity. It was 29 years after his disappearance in 1924 that Sir Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay became the first people to stand on the peak of Mount Everest. The mountain, it seemed, could be tamed. Those who came after were driven by a variety of reasons, but whatever their motivation, each of the climbers included in this ook overcame extraordinary odds to reach the top of the world's tallest mountain. In the process t only did they create history, they also shattered stereotypes to redefine the limits of possibility. Sumati Nagrath is a writer, editor, freelance journalist, teacher, and academic. She has written numerous articles, profiles, and interviews in the Indian press including, India Today Travel Plus and Business World, India's leading English-language business weekly. She was visiting lecturer at School of Social Science, University of Northampton, UK and taught at the School of Art and Design, Coventry University, UK. She w lives and works in Mumbai.