Top positive review
Good story, good characters, a sense of wonder: what's not to love about this book?
Reviewed in the United States on June 9, 2015
This book made Antarctica so real to me that now when I look at pictures of it in Google Maps, I think of the characters and stories in this book. The characters are vividly realized, the storytelling is gripping, and the descriptions are so clear that you feel like you are there. And he manages to weave both a bit of modern politics and a great deal of historical detail about the exploration of Antarctica into the storytelling in a way that supports rather than distracts to the story, giving it more depth and life than it could have had without, rather than seeming like a history lesson. There is some really fantastic science writing in here too, for example the bit about the neutrino detector at the south pole, and the bit about the beech forests that grew in Antartica during a previous geological warm spell. I am reciting all this from memory several months after having read the book, which is kind of amazing, because a lot of books read are comparatively very forgettable. I can't recommend this book enough.