Alive Background

Alive Background

Alive is a novel written by Piers Paul Read in 1974. The book documents the events of the Uruguayan Air Force Flight 571 crash in the Andes which led to many deaths. In the book, the story deals with factual occurrences and tells the story of he Uruguayan Rugby team and their friends and family who were involved in the airplane crash of Uruguayan Air Force Flight 571. The plane crashed into the Andes mountains on October 13, 1972. The book tells us that of the 45 people on the flight, only 16 survived in sub-zero temperatures. After a few days, the rescue team searching for the survivors gave up. Later, the survivors had to sustain life with rations found in the wreckage after the plane had crashed. The food and water rations did not last long, and in order to stay alive, the survivors were forced to eat the bodies of the dead. Eventually, the survivors were found and then Alive was published two years after the survivors of the crash were rescued.

The book was written by the author to document the factual event of the crash of the Uruguayan Air Force Flight 571 in the Andes mountain and to tell readers the horror of what they faced all alone on the mountains, stranded. The author actually interviewed many of the survivors as well as the family members of the passengers before writing this book to obtain facts about the crash.

The book was received well by critics and fans alike as it told the event very uniquely and as if the reader was actually present at the events. In fact, Walter Clemons declared that Alive "will become a classic in the literature of survival". Also, Michael A. Rogers stated that "Read has risen above the sensational and managed a book of real and lasting value." The book was turned into a full feature film in 1993 and produced by Frank Marshall.

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