In 1914, Sir Ernest Shackleton and his crew of 28 set off on the Imperial Trans-Antarctic Expedition on the ship Endurance, intending to cross the continent of
I had an awareness of this exhibition, but didn’t really know much about it. Last week, as I was rummaging through my audio books, trying to figure out what I wanted to read next, I came upon Endurance: Shackleton's Incredible Voyage by Alfred Lansing, narrated by Simon Prebble. At the time, it was somewhere in the 40s with the humidex (about 104F) and it seemed a good antidote. I was poking about on Amazon and accidentally saw a description of how everything turned out and I’m about post spoilers, so if you are vague on the details and want to be surprised, stop reading this review now, go get the book - I can highly recommend the audio version – and I’ll see you on Wednesday.
Are you sure?
And I’m so glad I accidentally read that spoiler and found out that everything turns out well, because if I hadn’t, I’d have bitten my nails to the quick and stayed up at night worrying about everyone.
The book is written based on the crew’s diaries and logs, which sounds as if it might be a bit repetitious and dry, but nothing could be further from the truth. It reads like a thrilling piece of fiction,
If this book was a piece of fiction, I would have rolled my eyes and tossed it across the room. Never have I read a piece of writing in which the characters over and over again are put in horrendously perilous situations and just as things calm down and they relax, danger arrives again. If it was fiction, you’d laugh at it, but it’s not - it really happened this way. And because of the detailed diaries and
As usual, Simon Prebble does a wonderful job narrating this book, effortlessly bringing individual character and voice to the different members of the crew and performing this piece of writing brilliantly. He brings the story to life, enhancing the tension, the desperation and blends his talent with the talent of the author in such a way that they pull you into the story, not letting go until the very end.
This one’s a keeper and I know I’ll be reading it again. Go get it. But be prepared to lose sleep when you can’t put it down.