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Ice Station Zebra

3.91 of 5 stars 3.91  ·  rating details  ·  8,655 ratings  ·  138 reviews
The US nuclear atomic submarine Dolphin slips out of Holy Loch in a hurry one stormy night. The submarine is to take Dr. Carpenter under the North Polar ice-cap, surfacing near a burnt-out weather station, Zebra.
Audio Cassette, 0 pages
Published May 3rd 1994 by Isis (first published 1963)
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Bob Mayer
One of the classic thrillers. Made into a decent movie.

Back in the good old days when the Soviets were the bad guys the Cold War was cold. Really cold in this case. MacLean was a master story-teller with fast paced plots. The race to Ice Station Zebra is classic; one thing this book taught me as a writer is that you can push the limits to develop characters. While some thing might seem amazing coincidences-- why not?

I commanded an A-Team in 10th Special Forces so we did Winter Warfare every yea
Ann aka Iftcan
Oct 02, 2007 Ann aka Iftcan rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: skip the movie
Ok, I enjoyed the book but frankly the movie SUCKED big time. Even Ernest Borgnine (who is a great character actor, btw) couldn't save this one. His character didn't even appear in the book, the whole ended was messed up and. . .

Oh wait, I'm supposed to be reviewing the BOOK. :o)

The book is a great read, but then I haven't found a single one of Maclean's books that I didn't enjoy.

I like the interplay between the characters in this one and the descriptions of the ice pack actually made me feel CO
Patrick Nichol
This is a first-rate Cold War thriller that stacks up well against the Tom Clancys of the world.

The book is also completely different from the famous Rock Hudson film.

MacLean's novel is a finely-crafted whodunit set in the frigid High Arctic.

Why did a fire break out on the British Arctic research station Zebra? And why is a U.S. nuclear submarime obliged to rescue, taking along a mysterious British physician with carte blanche from the Pentagon?

Toss in subterfuge, Soviets and constant jeopardy
Oct 13, 2013 Tejas rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: World War fanatics, Spy Thriller Addicts, Top Notch Suspense Lovers
Highly Recommended! Rated: 90%

And so fantastically it describes the Cold War. Including that its a page-turner, the suspense will create a havoc in your mind and the fact that some of the plot elements are true will blow you away. The characters are very well-written. Equally informative about submarines, the Arctic & the principles of professions that rule the espionage world.
High tension and a lot of mystery about the central character. But who is the real hero? The Brit or the US submarine captain? The ending is a who-done-it. The details of the submarine under the Arctic sea ice and how the submarine breaks through to rescue a British team near death, is stunning. A great adventure.
Dalton Lynne
Ice Station Zebra was pretty good - once you got halfway or more into it. Before that time, it felt quite plodding ... far from engaging. This is the reason I knocked off one star from the review. It also didn't help that the narrator was a bit on the dull side. Otherwise, I'd have given it four stars because when everything came together it was fairly solid.

However, I also have to add that when the bad guy was 'revealed' at the end, it wasn't surprising, as I'd already pegged who the villain wa
By Alistair Maclean. Grade: B+
Alistair Maclean has proved time and time again that he is the master when it comes to war fiction. Ice Station Zebra is no exception.
The atomic submarine Dolphin has impossible orders: to sail beneath the ice-floes of the Arctic Ocean to locate and rescue the men of weather-station Zebra, gutted by fire and drifting with the ice-pack somewhere north of the Arctic Circle. But the orders do not say what the Dolphin will find if she succeeds – that the fire at Ice Sta
Not perfect, but has aged much better than Ian Fleming's novels about James Bond and stands heads and shoulders above most modern spy thriller books that's for certain. (Tom Clancy and his ilk) The characters are pretty well-defined with distinctive personalities even though not many words are spent on their characterization, the plot actually takes its time to build up logically and the prose can occasionally get quite beautiful when describing the Arctic landscape.

Speaking of that: It's also
Typical Alistair MacLean novel from the 1960s. Man vs. nature. Man vs. machine. Man vs. man (cold war setting). A rescue mission to a remote polar outpost is much more than it seems. Adventure at the North Pole with an atomic submarine. (MacLean loved the sea and loved writing about boats.) Don't worry about character development (there is none) or being tempted by the weaker sex (there are no women in this story). This is an actioner and we get right down to it from page one. I love it! Loved r ...more
Dhiraj Sharma
Along with HMS Ulysse, Golden Rendzevous and San Andreas this is one of the best MacLean Novels.
A USN Nuclear Submarine dashes to the Arctic to rescue a British meteorological team trapped on the polar ice cap. However except the protagonist nobody knows that the rescue attempt is really a cover-up for one of the most desperate espionage missions of the Cold War.
MacLean is at his favourite territory here i.e the Sea. The climax is the proverbial "tables were turned".
Believe me nobody writes l
Conrad Kinch
I've always had a fondness for Alistair MacLean. My father would return home from work in Dublin City centre and leave his wool coat steaming in the hall. There was a second hand bookshop near the train station and he would stop off on Fridays and special occasions and buy a handful of paperbacks. The rules of the game were as follows, if I'd been good, I would be directed after dinner that "You might find something interesting, if you look in my coat."

If reports were bad, these might mysterious
D.L. Thomas
I've been meaning to read this one for a long time. MacLean definitely didn't disappoint - Ice Station Zebra is a gripping tale in a truly unforgiving setting. The perfect recipe for a successful thriller! Just enough "who done it" thrown in to keep you guessing.
This is my favorite Alistair Maclean book, and I think I've nearly read them all. I read this one years ago and still remember what a great read it was.
This was a great spy novel. I didn't figure out who the villians were until they were revealed. I'm looking forward to reading more by this author.
My favorite MacLean book. I thought it was great, and the movie they made from it was pretty good too.
"Πολικός σταθμός Ζίμπρα", εκδόσεις ΒΙΠΕΡ.

Πως έχει η ιστορία: Μια χειμωνιάτικη νύχτα το αμερικάνικο πυρηνικό υποβρύχιο Δελφίνι, αποπλέει από την Σκωτία με προορισμό την Αρκτική, και συγκεκριμένα έναν μετεωρολογικό σταθμό με την ονομασία Ζίμπρα. Ο σταθμός αυτός έχει πάθει πολλές ζημιές λόγω πυρκαγιάς, οι άνθρωποι που ζούσαν και εργάζονταν εκεί βρίσκονται σε άμεσο κίνδυνο και το υποβρύχιο πρέπει να φτάσει γρήγορα εκεί, για να τους σώσει. Με το Δελφίνι ταξιδεύει και ένας γιατρός, ο δρ. Κάρπεντερ, πο
I first read this when a young teenager about 40 years ago. Alistair MacLean was my favourite author at the time, but back then I was a bit disappointed with this one. On reflection I'm pretty sure this was because I had seen the not very good Rock Hudson star vehicle film first, which was massively different to the novel and all a bit over the top and silly . Forty years on, with the gradual dissipation of my grey matter taking effect in a positive way for once, I'd forgotten most of the detail ...more
Ice Station Zebra is the story of a submarine mission to rescue a group of stranded Arctic scientists from certain death. Our narrator joins the journey in Scotland, partially through the odd lie or two, and with a few secrets of his own. He quickly starts to have the highest regard for the submarine crew, and as they proceed through challenges and adventures, we learn that there is a strong personal motivation for him - and once they get to their destination, dark secrets and foul play involved ...more
Chris Bubb
What a claustrophobic book! I felt trapped reading it, like one of the people on the Dolphin, the nuclear sub that serves as the setting for the majority of this story. This is not to say it was bad--Alistair Maclean was very good at this sort of thing, and he did a very convincing job here. But the experience of reading this was far from pleasant.

I also found that the "unreliable narrator" device employed in this novel wore thin very quickly. After about the third statement along the lines of,
Ice Station Zebra was pretty good - once you got halfway or more into it. Before that time, it felt quite plodding ... far from engaging. This is the reason I knocked off one star from the review. It also didn't help that the narrator was a bit on the dull side. Otherwise, I'd have given it four stars because when everything came together it was fairly solid.

However, I also have to add that when the bad guy was 'revealed' at the end, it wasn't surprising, as I'd already pegged who the villain wa
Hrishi Kesav

Many novels usually take longer time to explain the surroundings and the subject matter of the story. But when reading this book, the reader gets acclimatized with the story in no time.

Much of the story happens inside a nuclear submarine. This in itself was a new experience for me, for I had not read a novel before which had a similar setting. The protagonist in the novel, the character played by Dr.Carpenter, is a man of imperturbable demeanor. He comes aboard the submarine for an investigation
Robert Dunlap
Thoroughly enjoyed, and can see elements of other submarine novels (ahem, Tom Clancy, Patrick Robinson) and adventure novels here. Adding to the amusement is how Saul Goodman, my favorite lawyer, uses the title as the name of his money-laundering front.
David Ross Wood
A great thriller mystery that has stood the test of time. Maclean was a master at this genre with this, like many of his books becoming good films in their day. Always likes to keep the reader entertained while guessing who is the bad guy.
Terry Wilkes
Far, far better than the film, which is a completely different plot altogether. This is an enjoyable Cold War romp, a little slow in the beginning to get out to the action, but builds nicely to a fun conclusion. One of MacLean's best.
This was a great action packed book. I thought it was just about a rescue mission to the North Pole but it turned into so much more than that! And for being a relativity "manly" book it was 100% clean. I couldn't put it down!
Nicole Landry
Wow that was a really great read! It had just the right amount of action and suspense, the pacing was great, there wasnt any redundancy and the ending was perfect. I thought it was excellent!! Must read if you like artic action!!
Lenny Husen
Fun read. Fortunately, no women characters since MacLean clearly thought women should be seen and not heard.
Character of Captain Swanson and the submarine bits worth the whole book. Plot a bit silly. Great book to read when you are sick or on the beach.
4.5* This was the book that introduced me to Alistair MacLean, and I have never looked back and it is still one of my all-time favorites ( and another example how a good book can be made in to a dreadful movie)
Andrew Rothschild
MacLean is a master of suspense. The narritive holds the reader from the first page till the last sending chills through the spine from time to time. I was glad to be able to put it down to allow me to catch my breath.
Jean Farrell
I listened to the audiobook from Audible. It was abridged. Not sure what was missing. I liked it a lot, a classic, cold-war era espionage thriller. They don't write them like that any more.
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Alistair Stuart MacLean (Scottish Gaelic: Alasdair MacGill-Eain), the son of a Scots Minister, was brought up in the Scottish Highlands. In 1941, at the age of eighteen, he joined the Royal Navy; two and a half years spent aboard a cruiser were to give him the background for 'HMS Ulysses', his first novel, the outstanding documentary novel on the war at sea. After the war he gained an English Hono ...more
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