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Antarctica: An Intimate Portrait of the World's Most Mysterious Continent Paperback – 14 Mar 2013
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We are all anxious Antarctic watchers now, and Walker's book is the essential primer (Guardian)
The early Antarctic expeditions are thoroughly covered in this enthralling book. But, then again, so is every other aspect of a place that continues to haunt the human imagination ... Perhaps best of all, Walker gives us a fantastically vivid sense of what it's like to be in Antarctica (Readers Digest)
This is a fascinating insight into one of the most inhospitable places on Earth and its implications for the world's future (Irish Examiner)
Brimful of science, heroism, tragedy and laugh-out-loud humour, Antarctica is an exciting and informative read ... Walker interweaves personal accounts and in-depth research to tell an intimate captivating story (Kathryn Jeffs BBC Focus)
A full and intimate portrait of the most mysterious continent on earth and how it holds the key to all our futuresSee all Product description
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Antarctica is the ideal place for cosmologists to look through powerful telescopes into the sky and discover the universe's distant past. It is also an ideal place for scientists to find out what the air was like in Earth's distant past because there are ancient air bubbles trapped in the ice which are brought up in core samples and then measured and dated, some samples going back hundreds of thousands of years. There is also much work to be done on the glaciers and the ice shelves; if it all melted tomorrow the world's sea level would increase around 3 to 4 feet which would make living in some low-lying areas impossible. The concerning thing is, for various reasons, some parts are melting into the sea at a much quicker rate and over a much shorter time than is ideal.
There is far more to this book than scientific facts. Gabrielle Walker gets insights, anecdotes and humorous stories from those people who choose to spend months in darkness and isolation and she recounts the stories of tragedy, triumphs and companionship from those visiting an icy world, which despite its beauty, really does need to be respected.
There is mention of the wildlife on Antarctica too; penguins, seals, whales et al. But the real action is at the level of the krill and other organisms which might not be as pretty but are the essential parts of Antarctica's ecosystem.
This approach really works and left me with a feeling of having fully experienced the continent without any of the biting cold.
A genuinely interesting, well written and thoroughly enjoyable book on a subject about which we should all know more because of Antarctica’s influence on all of our lives.
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This is an excellent book that deals with the Antartica as a complete entity including geography,geology,science, ecology,...Read more