The Endurance : Shackelton’s Incredible Voyage by Alfred Lansing
This is one of my favorite Non-Fiction books of all time. In August 1914 The Endurance, lead by Ernest Shackelton and his twenty-eight crew members set out to be the first explorers to cross the continent by way of the South Pole, taking scientific measurements and mapping a new territory. But instead, the ship got trapped in ice. The crew abandoned ship, removing all they could before it sank, including their sled dogs, a few small boats and sledges, food and water, medical supplies and scientific equipment. The explorers had to survive and find their way back to civilization by crossing on ice flows and open water, all while freezing cold and existing through unbearable hardships. The book captures the personalities of all the men who made this astonishing trip, as well as the descriptive icy landscape of the Antarctica. Time and time again they were faced with a new crisis, and the story builds in tension to a point where I, on my couch, thought it couldn’t get worse—and then it did. But Shackelton leads them home, eventually, every last one of them. The narration by Simon Prebble lends just the right voice to this sobering and inspiring book.