One of the most compelling books about the Arctic has to be Jennifer Niven’s The Ice Master: The doomed 1913 voyage of the Karluk. With Captain Bob Bartlett at the centre of the story, The Ice Master is “a harrowingly good story,” to borrow Fergus Fleming’s assessment in The Literary Review.
Here’s an excerpt from Jennifer’s web site:
“With nothing but half the ship’s store of supplies and the polar ice beneath their feet, Captain Bartlett, twenty-one men, an Inuit woman and her two small daughters, twenty-nine dogs, and one pet cat were now hopelessly shipwrecked in the middle of the Arctic Ocean, hundreds of miles from land. These castaways had no choice but to try to find solid ground where they could wait while they struggled against starvation, snow blindness, a gruesome and mysterious disease, exposure to the brutal winter — and each other.”
Jennifer’s book was one of Entertainment Weekly’s Top Ten Books of the Year for 2000.
Given her talents and remarkable accomplishments, I was thrilled to have Jennifer generously provide the following endorsement of Unchained Man: The Arctic Life and Times of Captain Robert Abram Bartlett, being released this week:
“A riveting comprehensive portrait of one of the most dynamic and enigmatic sea captains the Arctic has ever seen. Robert Abram Bartlett was larger than life, his adventures the stuff of legends. Maura Hanrahan expertly recounts the long overdue, very true story of this understated polar hero in engaging, dramatic prose.”
Today Jennifer Niven writes mainly in the Young Adult genre but she continues to focus on “ordinary people doing extraordinary things.” Her latest book is the New York Times YA bestseller Holding Up the Universe, written straight from the heart.
(BTW, if you’re in Alberta, the Lethbridge launch of Unchained Man is 2-4, Saturday, June 23 at Chapters. Refreshments are available and all are welcome. Maura Hanrahan)