The Art of Patience

Author(s): Sylvain Tesson


"The Art of Patience sees the renowned French adventurer and writer Sylvain Tesson undertake an expedition to the mountains of Tibet in search of the famously elusive snow leopard.

After the publication of The Consolations of the Forest (2014), Sylvain Tesson had a devastating climbing accident that broke far too many bones in his body. A year later, determined to walk himself back to health, he set off on the backroads of France from the Piedmont to Brittany. Then in 2018, in the footsteps of the admired American writer Peter Matthiessen, he undertook a far more ambitious, far more testing journey - to learn the art of patience, waiting for the snow leopard to appear no small challenge for a man who all his life has sought to beat time by outrunning it.

In the company of leading wildlife photographer Vincent Munier and two companions, Tesson headed up to the high plateaux of remotest Tibet. There, at 5,000 metres and in temperatures of -25C, the team set up their hides on exposed mountainsides, and occasionally in the luxury of an icy cave, to await a visitation from the almost mythical beast.

This tightly focused and tautly written narrative is simultaneously a dazzling account of an exacting journey, an apprenticeship in the art of patience, a meditation on what happens when time slows right down, an acceptance of the ruthlessness of the natural world and, finally, a plea for ecological sanity. It is also a small masterpiece."


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(*translated from the French by Frank Wynne)


Sylvain Tesson is one France's leading travel and nature writers, whose books have won him hundreds and thousands of readers in France and a number of its top prizes, including the 2009 Prix Goncourt. His highly regarded Consolations of the Forest was published in English in 2014.


General Fields

  • : 9781786079992
  • : Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
  • : Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
  • : May 2021
  • : .65 Inches X 5.75 Inches X 8.85 Inches
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : 176
  • : 915.1504612
  • : English
  • : 2107
  • : Hardback
  • : Sylvain Tesson