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Arctic Grail: The Quest for the Northwest Passage and the North Pole, 1818-1909by Pierre Berton
Synopses & Reviews
Culled from extensive research of handwritten diaries and private journals, Arctic Grail is the definitive book on the age of arctic exploration and adventure. Journey across the ice with a Who's Who of polar explorers, men of every temperament, including the pious and ambitious Edward Perry, the first explorer to probe deep into the Arctic labyrinth; Adolphus Greely, a Civil War veteran who had to watch his men starve to death on Ellesmere Island; Robert McClure, who claimed that he was the first to find the fabled Northwest Passage; and the flawed hero John Franklin, a meek naval officer whose expeditions were responsible for the deaths of more men than those of any other Arctic explorer. Travel with the adventurer Roald Amundsen, the cool Norwegian who completed a voyage in a tiny sloop that the British Navy failed to accomplish with its great three-masted ships; Frederick Cook, who lied about reaching the North Pole; and finally, the ruthless and paranoid Robert Peary, who claimed to have reached the North Pole in 1909. As much about the explorers who braved impossible odds as it is about each expedition, Arctic Grail is an epic account of the Golden Age of Exploration at the top of the world. (6 X 9, 672 pages, b&w photos, maps, illustrations)
Book News Annotation:
Author of many books relating to places and historical periods, Berton describes the dozens of expeditions mounted and hundreds of men lost trying to find the fabled Passage and Pole before Robert Peary reached the Pole in 1909. He draws on primary documents including hand-written journals, ship logs, and private diaries.
Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
Includes bibliographical references (p. 641-660) and index.
The complete saga of the pursuit for two of the world's greatest geographical prizes--the elusive Passage linking the Atlantic and Pacific, and the North Pole.
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