Alive: The True Story of the Andes Survivors
About this deal
Em informs everyone of what's happening, and the group rushes to find the shuttle. By now, they've taken Matilda hostage, and they force her to lead them to the shuttle. When they get there, they find that the army Matilda promised to send has arrived, but almost everyone is able to get in the shuttle regardless. Only two characters die, Matilda is dumped outside the shuttle entrance, and everyone else ends up safe within the shuttle. Alive ends with the shuttle leaving the spaceship, flying toward the new planet. When the plane crashed in the snows of the Andes, people were blown out of the plane. The boys who had survived listened to the cries of those who were dying. I listened too. And then 1 day they ran out of food and They were not sure what to do. 1 survivor suggested they eat the bodies of those who had died for they had been frozen in the snow.
Over the next 70 days, the remaining survivors battled cold, avalanches, injury, fear and hunger. To survive, they prayed - alot. They devised plans for capturing water. They made forays into the vast white bleak landscape to search for supplies and a way out. They became makeshift doctors and surgeons and helped the wounded. They waited for rescue to come from the outside. And to fight off starvation, they ate their dead.The author adds at the end that the survivors were disappointed with how little Read emphasized their spirituality and connection to God.
The number one issue that comes to mine if you know the story is the cannibalism. The book goes into failrly graphic detail of the dynamics of what the survivors did, but it also goes into the intense discussion and self-revelation they went through in deciding to eat their friends and family as well as the fallout when they got home. Cannibalism is such a taboo subject that just writing the words is difficult without feeling macabre or downright silly. Another thing I liked was that we see in alternate chapters the relentless efforts of the parents to find their children even after the official search was called off. Unfortunately all those efforts were in vain and the boys survived because they came to the conclusion that the strongest among them would have to cross the mountains and find help, and that's exactly what they did. Their getting out of there was truly epic, a superhuman exploit.
Presentation on Catholic Social Teaching
In 1993, Alive by Frank Marshall was released. A companion documentary, Alive: 20 Years Later, was made at the same time.