Davie's Reviews > Endurance: Shackleton's Incredible Voyage

Endurance by Alfred Lansing
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's review
May 10, 07

bookshelves: finished
Read in March, 2008

Part ripping yarn, part social psychology experiment, part metaphor for graduate school -- this is the most IN-CREDIBLE book that I've ever read.

It is insaaaaaannnneeeeee!!!!

But even though the whole time you are reading it, you are thinking to yourself -- #$(*&@$%(*waaahhh!!! -- the writing is remarkably restrained and pithy, putting you right in the moment without distracting you from what's going on. You'd almost think you were reading Updike, except the people in the story are real, and they are really trying to sail 1,000 miles in open sea in a 20 foot open-topped boat, and deciding whether or not it's worth it to slide down a fog-shrouded mountaintop to be smashed against rocks or fly off the edge of a cliff.

Alfred Lansing tells it straight, with lots of quotes from the sailors' diaries, and brilliant structuring. I hope he got some kind of prize for this, since it kicks so much ass.

!!!More exclamation points!!!
!!!!!
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