Dennis Grey’s Review of Mons graupius

Dear Gavin,
I have now read your novel, and my reaction is…..Wow!
If someone had sent me this, minus any indication as to the author
you would have been the last name I would have suggested as the creator.
I found it slow to get into,but then it became a page turner.
So many of your scenes brought back memories of my own time living in Edinburgh
and climbing in the Highlands (and lowlands, Traprain etc).
You also capture well the leitmotif of the era before modern equipment and training
changed climbing from a rather eccentric pastime, followed by ‘characters’ who were
on the fringes of society, to mainstream ‘athletes’ taking part now in a very organised game.
Your chapter with the epic on Ben Nevis, Observatory Ridge and the death of Dermot had me
Your book brought back to mind the late Dave Cook’s view and criticism that modern climbing
literature lacks a reality as to its participants lives. Often one reads a climbing book, and never is there
anything which tells of the largest part of their lives, with work and family considerations besides the
action on the crags. And your book avoids such, it is balanced with both ordinary life considerations and the
demands of rock and ice. Set in an era rich in social change and the climbing history of Scotland.
So congratulations on an outstanding work,which does capture the reality of a life lived at this time
of such major developments.

Best wishes