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The Impossible First

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Colin O’Brady’s awe-inspiring, New York Times bestselling memoir recounting his recovery from a tragic accident and his record-setting 932-mile solo crossing of Antarctica is a “jaw-dropping tale of passion and perseverance” (Angela Duckworth, New York Times bestselling author of Grit).

Prior to December 2018, no individual had ever crossed the landmass of Antarctica alone, without support and completely human powered. Yet, Colin O’Brady was determined to do just that, even if, ten years earlier, there was doubt that he’d ever walk again normally. From the depths of a tragic accident, he fought his way back. In a quest to unlock his potential and discover what was possible, he went on to set three mountaineering world records before turning to this historic Antarctic challenge.

O’Brady’s pursuit of a goal that had eluded many others was made even more intense by a head-to-head battle that emerged with British polar explorer Captain Louis Rudd—also striving to be “the first.” Enduring Antarctica’s sub-zero temperatures and pulling a sled that initially weighed 375 pounds—in complete isolation and through a succession of whiteouts, storms, and a series of near disasters—O’Brady persevered.

Alone with his thoughts for nearly two months in the vastness of the frozen continent—gripped by fear and doubt—he reflected on his past, seeking courage and inspiration in the relationships and experiences that had shaped his life.

“Incredibly engaging and well-written” (The Wall Street Journal)—and set against the backdrop of some of the most extreme environments on earth, from Mt. Everest to Antarctica—this is “an unforgettable memoir of perseverance, survival, daring to dream big, and showing the world how to make the impossible possible” (Booklist, starred review).

© Henry Cromett

Colin O’Brady is a ten-time world record breaking explorer, New York Times bestselling author, entrepreneur, speaker, and an expert on mindset. His mission: using his hard-won wisdom to encourage others to step outside of their comfort zone and unlock their best lives. Colin’s highly publicized expeditions have been seen by millions and his work has been featured in The New York Times and Forbes and on The Tonight Show, the BBC, The Joe Rogan Experience, and Today.  His feats include the world’s first solo, unsupported, and fully human-powered crossing of Antarctica, speed records for the Explorers Grand Slam and the Seven Summits, and the first human-powered row across Drake Passage. He regularly speaks at Fortune 100 companies such as Nike, Google, and Amazon and at top universities such as UPenn, Georgetown, and Johns Hopkins. Native to the Pacific Northwest, he now lives in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, with his wife, Jenna Besaw, and dog, Jack. Engage with Colin and his work on social media @ColinOBrady or at ColinOBrady.com. 

© Henry Cromett

Colin O’Brady is a ten-time world record breaking explorer, New York Times bestselling author, entrepreneur, speaker, and an expert on mindset. His mission: using his hard-won wisdom to encourage others to step outside of their comfort zone and unlock their best lives. Colin’s highly publicized expeditions have been seen by millions and his work has been featured in The New York Times and Forbes and on The Tonight Show, the BBC, The Joe Rogan Experience, and Today.  His feats include the world’s first solo, unsupported, and fully human-powered crossing of Antarctica, speed records for the Explorers Grand Slam and the Seven Summits, and the first human-powered row across Drake Passage. He regularly speaks at Fortune 100 companies such as Nike, Google, and Amazon and at top universities such as UPenn, Georgetown, and Johns Hopkins. Native to the Pacific Northwest, he now lives in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, with his wife, Jenna Besaw, and dog, Jack. Engage with Colin and his work on social media @ColinOBrady or at ColinOBrady.com. 

"Colin O'Brady may be physically and mentally superhuman. He holds speed records for astonishing feats—climbing the highest peaks in all 50 U.S. states and completing the Explorers Grand Slam of climbing the highest mountain on each continent, plus reaching the North and South Pole. In this memoir, he recounts being the first to traverse Antarctica alone and unsupported. . . . O'Brady's sincerity is never in doubt, and the image of him dancing on the ice to Paul Simon's 'Graceland' is sure to generate a smile."

– AudioFile Magazine

More books from this author: Colin O'Brady