Jan's Reviews > The White Darkness

The White Darkness by Geraldine McCaughrean
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's review
Apr 25, 2007

really liked it
bookshelves: teenbooks, printz-winner
Read in April, 2007

White Darkness has the most amazing premise. Fourteen year old Sym travels with her uncle to the Antarctic on what should be the trip of a lifetime. It is indeed a trip that will never be forgotten. Her uncle is convinced that there is a hole in the Antarctic that leads to an inner world, proving the earth is a hollow shell. After they arrive at the base, her uncle sabotages the return plane and drugs everyone at the base so he can steal a snow machine and head towards the coordinates where he thinks the hole will be. Along for the ride are Sym and a film director and his son. But things are not as they seem. Sym is now on an adventure that will quickly turn into a nightmare of deception, treachery, and madness.

This is a terrific adventure, beautifully written. It is also a wonderful story about a young girl who feels adrift in her ordinary life. Her isolation leads her to invent interior conversations with a long dead Antarctic explorer named Titus Oates, who died on the ill fated trek to the Pole commanded by Scott. It is Titus who will keep her will to live going when she thinks that all is lost.

A sophisticated novel with a gripping plot and characters that are utterly memorable.
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