Smashing through the Arctic Ocean with the crew of a Russian icebreaker, herding reindeer across the tundra with Lapps and shadowing the Trans-Alaskan pipeline with truckers, the author discovers a complex and ambiguous land belonging both to ancient myth and modern controvery.
Smashing through the Arctic Ocean with the crew of a Russian icebreaker, herding reindeer across the tundra with Lapps and shadowing the Trans-Alaskan pipeline with truckers, Sara Wheeler discovers a compex and ambiguous land belonging both to ancient myth and modern controvery. The Magnetic North is a spicy confection of history, science and reflection in which Wheeler meditates on the role of the Arctic- fragmented lands which fed imaginations long before the scientists and oilmen showed up (not to mention desperado explorers who ate their own shoes). The Magnetic North tells of all this, plus gulag ghosts, old and new Russia, colliding cultures and bioaccumulated toxins in polar bears.
Sara Wheeler was brought up in Bristol. She read Classics and Modern Languages at Oxford University before embarking on polar explorations. A traveller, journalist and broadcaster, she lives in London with her partner and young son. She is the author of five previous books, including Terra Incognita- Travels in Antarctica, Cherry- A Life of Apsley Cherry-Garrard and Too Close to the Sun- The Life and Times of Denys Finch Hatton.
"The Magnetic North is a wise, provoking and zestful chronicle, poetic, often tragic and always engaging. Wheeler, a prolific raconteur of distant places, has created the finest book on the Arctic since Hugh Brody's The Other Side of Eden" -- Rory Maclean The Sunday Times "A superb account of her circumpolar wanderings..." "Wheeler is an excellent narrator, intelligent, amusing, poetic and down to earth" -- Fergus Fleming Literary Review "Wheeler writes about travel so well because she delights in travelling. Her adventurous spirit, tireless intelligence, joy and with hshine through even the saddest page of The Magnetic North... she has a rare and precious talent" -- Roger Hutchinson Scotsman "A fusion of history and myth...elegant and intelligent" Books Quarterly "Wheeler's book teaches a lot about what is happening in the far north, which is valuable" -- Kathleen James The Guardian
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