Volcano, HI (PressExposure) July 13, 2011 -- "Over the Top & Back Again: Hiking X the Alps," the latest travel adventure book by peripatetic travel writer Brandon Wilson, has been named 2010 Book of the Year Bronze Award winner (travel essay division) by ForeWord Reviews. The announcement was made on June 25, 2011 at the American Library Association Annual Conference in New Orleans. Wilson's book was selected by librarians and reviewers from 1400 entries in 56 genres, representing more than 350 publishers.
"Over the Top & Back Again" chronicles Wilson's 1200-mile (1900-km.) hike with his wife for 111 days on the Via Alpina. Their wild adventure led them across Italy, Slovenia, Austria, Germany, Liechtenstein, Switzerland, and France to Monaco. Besides offering immersion into Alpine life and wilderness, it meant climbing 3000 feet (1000 meters) from valley to mountain hut each day-the equivalent of 12 Mt. Everests-in extreme conditions, including Föhn winds, hail, ice, snow, and more than 40 days of rain.
Still, it was more than pain and peril as the couple hiked in the shadows of Mt. Blanc, the Eiger, and the Dolomite Range. Little could compare to the beauty, wildlife, legends, culture, cuisine-and humorous characters they found along the way.
In a recent review of "Over the Top & Back Again," ForeWord Reviews wrote, "Wilson's casual writing style showcases his humor and pulls readers into his tales of dangerous treks, eccentric characters, and uncooperative weather. For outdoor enthusiasts, this book will awaken the travel bug within and inspire adventure. For others, it's a worthwhile armchair journey through beautiful country with friendly guides."
Kyle Wagner, travel editor of The Denver Post, called it, "My favorite kind of adventure tale... I laughed, I winced, and then I started checking to see when I was next scheduled to be anywhere near the Via Alpina."
A common theme in all of Wilson's books is that ordinary people can overcome seemingly insurmountable challenges. His past literary adventures have led readers step-by-step across the wilds of occupied-Tibet, then from London to Cape Town on an edge-of-your-seat African safari, and finally on a peace walk while blazing the path of the first Knights Templar from France to Jerusalem.
"Over the Top & Back Again" is the first Via Alpina (Trieste to Monaco) travel narrative published in English, with 53 author photos, maps and custom illustrations by Ken Plumb. It provides a humorous first-hand account for those who dream of making a similar journey themselves on foot--or maybe just in their mind.
It's the fourth in a series of true travel adventure books by Brandon Wilson and published by Pilgrim's Tales (Hawaii). His "Along the Templar Trail: Seven Million Steps for Peace" received the prestigious Lowell Thomas Gold Award for 2009 Best Travel Book (Society of American Travel Writers). Wilson's other books include: "Dead Men Don't Leave Tips: Adventures X Africa" and "Yak Butter Blues," which won the Independent Publisher IPPY Award. He is a member of The Explorers Club.
Since 1998, ForeWord Reviews has been one of the publishing industry's most respected magazine and online review service for readers, booksellers, book buyers, publishing insiders, and librarians. Published bi-monthly, each issue reaches 26,000 librarians and booksellers. The Book of the Year Awards program was created to spotlight distinctive books from independent publishers. They explained, "These books are examples of independent publishing at its finest."
"Over the Top & Back Again" is available from your favorite bookseller in hardcover and paperback, or in new Kindle format from Amazon.com. For more information, a video, reviews and a preview, please visit http://www.pilgrimstales.com.