Uphill is a compelling addition to anyone’s book collection. It is an inconceivable story based on real-life experiences. No one’s imagination can make this up. Geoffrey has intelligently crafted a story that draws the reader into his life and the horrifying events that unfold. It is a remarkable study of human love, betrayal, suffering, courage, hope and strength.
Geoffrey picks out parts of his past and develops this antihero character. He builds up his self-made life and travels the world, adding his English humour and dry sarcasm to write an entertaining story. It would be impossible to envision a reader closing the cover and not coming away with something. This is a very important piece of work.
The reader’s attention is grabbed in the Preface by dragging them steeped in pain up a massive mountain pass on a cycle. There are enough details and graphic accounts of emotional turmoil to suggest this guy has gone through hell. As the story develops, the peaks and valleys heighten, and the depth of the abyss he has to climb out of magnifies. It is cleverly crafted and purposefully executed.
The knee rebuild surgeries were groundbreaking. How he deals with this, the complications from the corrective surgeries, the eventual failures will shock and draw in the reader. They will feel his screaming pain and depressive struggles. But they will laugh and be humbled as he seeks the humorous side of this surgical onslaught.
Being told by surgeons that his knee was finished didn’t stop him. The effort, desire and insane goals he sets on his cycle will provide hope and encouragement for everyone.
Unknown to Geoffrey, his wife had been planning divorce for several years and he wasn’t prepared for it, not that it mattered in the end. This part of the book should disturb all readers when a fraudulent default judgment was filed. A subsequent appeal against the judgment is sealed from public records.
When the knee is lost and the divorce filed, a forest fire destroys his new neighbourhood. Then came the default judgment and the financial destruction of his company. He finds love again only to be erroneously tossed in jail. Instead of drowning in alcohol, he continues his cycling quest and rewards himself with accomplishments that left the medical profession speechless.
Throughout all these calamitous events, he could have given up but elected not to. He had responsibility of employees, his children and himself. He didn’t want to be beaten down. He didn’t want to lose the fight. He didn’t want to toss in the towel. When one’s back is against the wall and one is falling, it is not clear to see who will bring a bat, who will hold their hand out and who to trust. One’s faith in humanity gets distorted but this is life. Geoffrey wanted to find out who he is. He wanted to test the limits and wanted to keep pushing the boundaries of his pain and suffering in order to keep going.
His scientific and engineering firsts add credence to an already entertaining and fascinating story.
Readers will have their own experiences and will be able to relate. Some will have gone through hell and will find the drive and motivation in Uphill to help them. As Geoffrey jumps from one catastrophic event to another, it is a testament to his tenacious ability to keep moving forwards. He never gives up. It is motivating, inspiring and dynamically moving. It is well written and a remarkable true story.