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on 20 March 2004
In the land of white death chronicles the escape of Valerian Albanov from his icebound ship (the saint anna) his trek across the frozen wastes of siberia, recreated from his journal his writing style translates very well into english with none of the mood or struggle lost.
Set around the time of Shackleton the similaraties are unmistakable (although shackleton had an altogeter happier ending), a must read for any adventure fan, at the end of the day if Albanov had been British he would have been up there with with Sott Shacklton and co, as one of the great polar journeys ever told.
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on 6 September 2012
The book description offered by the publisher is really quite an accurate account of this book. I've read numerous books on Scott, Amundsen, Shackleton and Mawson, but the hero of this story is really better than most of these! Amundsen was such a good explorer that he made it seem too easy, and consequently has never got the credit really due him. Scott, Shackleton and Mawson have had the exact opposite treatment, told by themselves or in various biographies, recounting in graphic detail all they went through (and more...), while Albanov, whose experience certainly equalled, or indeed outdid those of all three, is virtually (completely?) unknown. The added advantage of this book is that it is essentially the travel diary he kept as he struggled to save himself and the men who of their own volition decided to go with him. As in other books on Heroic Age exploration in the Artic and Antarctica, you can't help but take note of the incompetence, not to say worse, that usually underlay all these undertakings. Albanov's captain (he was the navigator) and practically the whole crew were hopelessly muddled, incompetent or useless, Albanov being one of the few on board with any sense of what was going on. It is significant that out of the whole ship's company that sailed form St. Petersburg in Russia in August, 1912, only Albanov returned, dragging one other survivor with him, and after an heroic struggle of almost unbelievable difficulty and suffering. Albanov was a real hero and deserves the wider audience he never got in his short lifetime.
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on 27 October 2012
Superb tale of survival translated at last in to English .

The ship locked in ice the crew mutinous 13 decide to leave
The rest is a brutal almost unbelievable struggle for survival.

Again the whole game will be given away if you look at the map or read any of the forwards or intros

Be kind to yourself read and enjoy!
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on 28 July 2013
Such as Scott & Shackleton. Poignant too as he died couple of yrs later In a very matter of fact way inn same neck of the woods having never received the plaudits afforded other ice explorers (alive or dead). A very good read only spoilt by reading the cover notes, which make it a matter of when not if - get it and see why?
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on 25 March 2015
a tale of determination and skill against the odds. The brave leader of the group had an uphill struggle to reach safety, and was hampered by foolish companions
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on 8 May 2013
Good solid factual account of a very tough journey . A good read for anyone ,especialy in polar exploration. I would reccomend it to anyone
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on 24 August 2014
Absolutely riveting first hand account of a terrible ordeal - the fight for survival against all odds.
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on 3 January 2016
A fantastic story.
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