For Tim Ward and his son, Josh, Mount Kilimanjaro was much more than the highest mountain in Africa, at 19,341 feet. They climbed the physical mountain together as a team in 2010 and by doing so each one summited an emotional mountain of his own.
Tim Ward tells their adventure-bonding story in "Zombies on Kilimanjaro: A Father-Son Journey Above the Clouds" (John Hunt, $16.95, 233 pages).
Ward is a corporate communications coach and teacher who lives in Bethesda, Md. As a veteran trekker, he has climbed throughout the Himalayas, the Alps and the Rockies.
"Kilimanjaro had always been a dream for me, and then I realized I could make it a reality," he said via telephone. "(The mountain) was only an hour's plane ride from an assignment I was on in Kenya. Josh (who was 20 at the time) was willing to fly over (from the United States) and join me."
During the ascent, "we talked about a lot of things and were able to set our relationship on a different course," Tim Ward said. "That inner journey is at the heart of the book."
What was the take-away?
"For Josh, it was a rite of passage. He had never done anything so tough in his life, and it gave him a sense of himself as a man.
"For me, it was witnessing this transformation in Josh and letting go of my need to be a parent. We're closer now than ever before."
Josh Ward is a senior at the University of Maryland in Baltimore, working toward a bachelor of fine arts degree in theater.
Tim Ward is on a promotional book tour that will bring him to Sacramento for three free appearances. He will give presentations, take questions and autograph his book. Seating is limited at the two REI events; register at www.zombiesonkilimanjaro.com/ events.
The two appearances are:
7 p.m. Tuesday at REI, 1148 Galleria Blvd., Roseville, (916) 724-6750.
7 p.m. Wednesday at REI, 1790 Expo Parkway, Sacramento, (916) 924-8900.
He also is to appear at 5 p.m. Wednesday at Barnes & Noble, 1725 Arden Way, Sacramento. (916) 565-0644.
What pages are you turning?
Recently, we asked you to share your summer reading lists with other readers. You responded with dozens of eclectic titles.
To participate, email a list of the books you plan to read this summer, to firstname.lastname@example.org. Type "Summer Reading" in the subject field, and include your name, daytime phone number and city of residence.
We heard from Marilyn Wirth of Woodland, who emailed, "Here's what I plan on reading this summer. It's going to be fun!"
"The Whereabouts of Eneas McNulty" by Sebastian Barry
"Great Expectations" by Charles Dickens
"The Cider House Rules" by John Irving
"The Man in the White Sharkskin Suit" by Lucette Lagnado
"Death in the Fifth Position" by Gore Vidal, writing as Edgar Box
"White House Burning" by Simon Johnson and James Kwak
"Bring Up the Bodies" by Hilary Mantel
Lots of books from UCD folks
Among the books published each year, thousands are by university personnel including those associated with the University of California, Davis.
This summer-reading list was compiled by Paul Takushi of the UC Davis bookstore, and Karen Nikos, UC Davis senior public information representative. Their picks are from the dozens of titles by UC Davis faculty and staff members and alumni.
For more recommendations, you can subscribe to Takushi's e-newsletter by emailing email@example.com, with "Buzz Subscribe" in the subject heading. Books by UC Davis authors are at the bookstore in the "Campus Authors" section.
"Contents May Have Shifted" by Pam Houston (W.W. Norton, $25.95, 320 pages): A key theme: We all have baggage, so we might as well get used to traveling with it. The director of the UC Davis creative writing program makes her point by taking readers on a spiritual journey around the world.
"Foam" by Charles Bamforth (American Society for Brewing Chemists, $39.95, 80 pages): The witty beer authority aims this one at "bar owners, home brewers and anyone interested in beer. It's criminal the way some people pour beer," he said on the phone.
Here's how to top a glass of brew with the perfect head of foam. Bamforth, author of "Beer Is Proof God Loves Us," is in the UC Davis Department of Food Science and Technology. "Foam" is available only at www.asbcnet.org.
"Hotels, Hospitals and Jails" by Anthony Swofford (Twelve, $26.99, 276 pages): This second memoir by alumnus Swofford, a Persian Gulf War veteran, takes on his relationship with his father, also a veteran and Marine.
"Hand Me Down" by Melanie Thorne (Dutton, $25.95, 311 pages): The story of a girl who travels between California and Utah in search of her family. Chosen by School Library Journal for its "Adult Books 4 Teens" list.
"California: On-the-Road Histories" by Laurie Glover and Victor Silverman (Interlink, $22, 390 pages): The sometimes bitter, often triumphant history behind the California myth, with humor and recommended travel destinations.
"Time's Shadow: Remembering a Family Farm in Kansas" by Arnold J. Bauer (Kansas University Press, $24.95, 176 pages): In chapters with titles such as "Houses" and "Having Company," Bauer recalls a way of life that has disappeared.
"Certain Uncollected Poems" by Sandra McPherson (Swanscythe Press, $17.50, 60 pages): The award-winning emeritus English professor and National Book Award nominee has gathered her best previously published verse.
"Frontier Figures: American Music and the Mythology of the American West" by Beth E. Levy (University of California Press, $34.95, 470 pages): Music professor Levy looks at how Western Americana has been woven into American culture via music.
"Malaquias Montoya" by Terezita Roma (University of Minnesota Press, $24.95, 200 pages): Biographical close-up of Montoya, a professor emeritus in Chicana/o studies and one of the most influential artists of his generation.
"Charles Munch" by D. Kern Holoman (Oxford University Press, $35, 352 pages): Meticulous biography of the iconic violinist-conductor. Holoman is conductor emeritus of the UC Davis Symphony Orchestra.
"From Goods to a Good Life" by Madhavi Sunder (Yale University Press, $35, 272 pages): Law professor Sunder calls for a richer understanding of the impact of intellectual property law on social and cultural life.
"As If" by Michael Saler (Oxford University Press, $27.95, 304 pages): A history of the world's fascination with virtual reality (including the Sherlock Holmes character).
Also of capital-area interest ...
On the local authors scene:
"Whitewater Killer" by Kent Treiber (CreateSpace, $12.99, 360 pages): A serial killer is on the loose, pursued by California Department of Justice agents through Sacramento, Roseville, Yuba City and the foothills, and on some of the roughest whitewater rivers in the state. Treiber lives near Grass Valley.
"Grandpa, Were You Young Once?" by William C. Gould (CreateSpace, $14.95, 253 pages): Written to "inspire seniors to recall their special memories," the helpful guide-memoir explores the past (1940-80) and present in a "then-now" format. Topics include music, sports, cars, jobs and military service.
For more: www.backwhen.com.
Bonhams accepting bids
For collectors: Eccentric bookseller Peter Howard was known for his vast and valuable collection of antiquarian books, which he sold and traded at his legendary Serendipity Bookstore in Berkeley. It closed after his death in 2011.
In February, Bonhams auction house opened part of that treasure trove to public bidding, including much rare material by John Steinbeck.
Now Bonhams is conducting tours of the Serendipity warehouse in Berkeley through July 16, accepting bids on the contents.
"The collection is massive; there could be 200,000 items," said Bonhams spokesman Adam Stackhouse. To make an appointment, call (415) 503 3266.