Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “I May Be Some Time: Ice and the English Imagination” as Want to Read:
I May Be Some Time: Ice and the English Imagination
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

I May Be Some Time: Ice and the English Imagination

3.83  ·  Rating Details ·  83 Ratings  ·  6 Reviews
Francis Spufford explores the British obsession with polar exploration in a book that Jan Morris, writing in The Times, called, "A truly majestic work of scholarship, thought and literary imagination..." The title, a last quote from one explorer to his party as he left their tent never to return, embodies the danger and mystery that fueled the romantic allure of the poles ...more
Hardcover, 388 pages
Published November 15th 1997 by St. Martin's Press (first published June 24th 1996)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about I May Be Some Time, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about I May Be Some Time

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Mar 06, 2010 Rick rated it really liked it
I MAY BE SOME TIME: ICE AND THE ENGLISH IMAGINATION is a fascinating account of the effects of polar exploration on British thinking from the 18th through 20th centuries.

Among the ideas that affected the English imagination are the power and sublimity of nature, heroism and disaster, the reputations of lost explorers, and the characteristics of native peoples.

I recommend this book to anyone interested in the history of ideas, and one need not be a fan of polar exploration to enjoy it.
Adam Belcher
Jan 27, 2011 Adam Belcher rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was an amazing book. Beautiful representation of the British spirt of adventure and exploration. It manages to combine biographies, diary entries, novels and short stories and first hand accounts of polar exploration seamlessly into a dissection of the attitudes and beliefs of the British public and intelligentsia over the course of our obsession with the polar landscapes.
i couldn't get far in this book. the topic was fascinating, but it was so tediously written that it just wasn't gonna happen. worth skimming or lookin for specific topics, but definitely not a cover to cover for me.
Chris Stanley
Interesting topic, but felt like it was written by a less than enthusiastic writer. I guess I skim-read it! Another reader has suggested that it may be too academic, and I'd go along with that, in my case anyway. Some interesting points along the way but too little on Scott.
Phillip Poulton
Phillip Poulton rated it really liked it
Nov 17, 2014
Ben rated it it was amazing
Feb 18, 2017
David Bresnahan
David Bresnahan rated it liked it
Apr 02, 2013
Remus rated it liked it
Apr 14, 2012
Carolyn rated it it was amazing
Jul 29, 2009
Stephen rated it really liked it
Dec 19, 2011
Carol-Anne rated it liked it
Apr 11, 2015
Ruadhán rated it liked it
Apr 07, 2016
Romy rated it it was amazing
Jul 05, 2009
Gavin rated it liked it
Jul 02, 2012
Paul rated it really liked it
Oct 25, 2008
Hilary rated it liked it
Jan 29, 2016
Nancy rated it it was amazing
Mar 30, 2014
Francine rated it liked it
Sep 12, 2011
Susan Keady
Susan Keady rated it really liked it
Feb 21, 2015
Rebecca rated it really liked it
Aug 17, 2015
Amy rated it it was amazing
Jan 17, 2014
Hoyadaisy rated it liked it
Dec 31, 2014
Neil Mckernan
Neil Mckernan rated it liked it
Nov 22, 2014
Ross Notman
Ross Notman rated it really liked it
Jul 25, 2011
Kate rated it really liked it
Apr 29, 2013
Vena rated it really liked it
Dec 20, 2008
Tom rated it it was amazing
Dec 31, 2013
Chris rated it really liked it
Feb 06, 2012
Emmie rated it liked it
Mar 28, 2016
Liz rated it liked it
Feb 01, 2012
« previous 1 3 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Any similar books? 2 9 Mar 07, 2012 01:47PM  
  • Cherry: A Life of Apsley Cherry-Garrard
  • Ice Blink: The Tragic Fate of Sir John Franklin's Lost Polar Expedition
  • Mawson's Will: The Greatest Polar Survival Story Ever Written
  • The Coldest March: Scott's Fatal Antarctic Expedition
  • The Birthday Boys (Bainbridge, Beryl)
  • Skating to Antarctica
  • Ghosts of Cape Sabine: The Harrowing True Story of the Greely Expedition
  • South Pole: An Account of the Norwegian Antarctic Expedition in the 'Fram', 1910-12
  • Alone: The Classic Polar Adventure
  • Resolute: The Epic Search for the Northwest Passage and John Franklin, and the Discovery of the Queen's Ghost Ship
  • Fatal Passage: The Story of John Rae, the Arctic Hero Time Forgot
  • Nansen
  • Barrow's Boys: The Original Extreme Adventurers: A Stirring Story of Daring Fortitude and Outright Lunacy
  • The Lost Men: The Harrowing Saga of Shackleton's Ross Sea Party
  • Shackleton's Boat Journey
  • Captain Scott
  • A First Rate Tragedy : Robert Falcon Scott and the Race to the South Pole
  • No Horizon Is So Far: Two Women And Their Extraordinary Journey Across Antarctica
Spufford began as a writer of non-fiction, though always with a strong element of story-telling. Among his early books are I May Be Some Time, The Child That Books Built, and Backroom Boys. He has also edited two volumes of polar literature. But beginning in 2010 with Red Plenty, which explored the Soviet Union around the time of Sputnik using a mixture of fiction and history, he has been drawing ...more
More about Francis Spufford...

Share This Book