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Prisoners of the North

3.98  ·  Rating Details ·  120 Ratings  ·  7 Reviews
Canada’s master storyteller returns to the North to chronicle the extraordinary stories of five inspiring and controversial characters.

Canada’s master storyteller returns to the North to bring history to life. Prisoners of the North tells the extraordinary stories of five inspiring and controversial characters whose adventures in Canada’s frozen wilderness are no less fasc
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Paperback, 336 pages
Published May 17th 2005 by Anchor Canada (first published 1995)
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Chris
What is it about the Far North that not only causes people to risk their lives to explore it but also draws people to read about it?
I’m not sure, and neither is Berton, but he sure writes a good book about five people whose lives in some ways were defined and/or determined by the North – Joe Boyle, Vihjalmur Stefansson, Jane Franklin, John Hornby, and Robert Service.
Both Service and Franklin might be considered to be unusual subjects. It is unclear whether Franklin is present simply to include
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Carla
Jan 27, 2015 Carla rated it really liked it
Amazing book from an amazing iconic Canadian author about little known people in Canadian history. Biographies of people who are a part of Canadian history, who helped explore, and settle Canada's north.

The five "prisoners" of the Arctic were Joe Boyle, Vihjalmur Stefansson, Lady Jane Franklin, John Hornby, and Robert Service.

Read in the cold of winter by this Canadian reader, now living in Wisconsin. A real treat to read, by an outstanding author.
Allen
Sep 03, 2013 Allen rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: canadian-history
Five short biographies of five interesting characters, all unable to escape from the North, regardless of where they went.
Klondike Joe Boyle built the biggest gold dredging barges in the world but got bored. In an unofficial Canadian army uniform he headed into Eastern Europe during the Great War, playing several roles in the Russian Revolution and becoming the lover of the Queen of Romania.
Vilhjalmur Stefansson explored a great deal of the up-to-then unexplored Canadian Arctic but his search f
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Robert Browning
Apr 04, 2009 Robert Browning rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A suprisingly good read. I picked up this book for the chapter on Lady Jane Franklin (after having just finished the fictional account of her husband's lost voyage in The Terror A Novel by Dan Simmons). While I enjoyed getting the actual facts of John Franklin's tribulations searching for her husband, I actually enjoyed all five of the in-depth profiles of these figures whose lives were all deeply touched by events or experiences related to the far Northern reaches of Canada. And even with this ...more
Lauren
Sep 06, 2008 Lauren rated it really liked it
Fascinating book. Goes past the usual goldrush significants, and explores five different people from all walks of life, who did lived different lives and at different times, but were held together with a common thread: The North. I greatly enjoyed this book.
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From narrative histories and popular culture, to picture and coffee table books to anthologies, to stories for children to readable, historical works for youth, many of his books are now Canadian classics.

Born in 1920 and raised in the Yukon, Pierre Berton worked in Klondike mining camps during his university years. He spent four years in the army, rising from private to captain/instructor at the
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