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South (Adlard Coles Maritime Classics) Paperback – 14 Aug 2014

4.4 out of 5 stars 309 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Adlard Coles (14 Aug. 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1472907159
  • ISBN-13: 978-1472907158
  • Product Dimensions: 13.1 x 2.4 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (309 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 987,112 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Amazon Review

It's all so British. Which polar explorer do we all know and revere? Captain Scott. Which polar explorer had a fixation for Naval class distinctions and refused to contemplate the idea of sledge-dog travel, thereby condemning himself and his companions to an icy death? Captain Scott. If we're looking for heroics, we've been looking in the wrong place. Ernest Shackleton has not received a quarter of Scott's plaudits but he is infinitely more deserving. Having got within 100 miles of the South Pole in 1908, pioneering the route up the Beardmore Glacier on to the polar icecap in the process, Shackleton was left to watch Amundsen and Scott slug it out for the big prize. Looking for a different challenge, he set sail for the Antarctic in the Endurance in the summer of 1914 in the hope of making the first trans-Antarctic crossing. The Endurance was crushed in the pack ice and Shackleton successfully led his 27 men to the edge of the ice. From there he made a sea crossing in three open boats to Elephant Island. After several months he realised there was no hope of rescue, so he set sail with four others on a 600-mile crossing to South Georgia. He was eventually shipwrecked on the uninhabited side of the island and forced into making the first-ever winter crossing. Two days later he strolled into the whaling station at Stromness, having been long since given up for dead and proceeded to personally oversee the rescue of those still stranded on Elephant Island. Not a single person in Shackleton's expedition party was lost. South is Shackleton's own account of this expedition. It tries hard--in the way latter-day Edwardians did--to play up the scientific discoveries but there's no disguising this is basically a classic tale of derring-do. As such it's a wonderful, if understated read, with an unexpected poignancy in the epilogue. When Shackleton returned to Europe, the First World War had been going on for two years. The political and psychological map of Britain had changed for ever and many of the returning explorers found it hard to adjust. This book has been reprinted many times since it was first published in 1919. This edition comes with a workman-like introduction from Peter King, who bizzarely manages to refer to Roland Huntford, author of the brilliant definitive biography of Shackleton, as James Huntford. Where it does score, though, is in the assembly of James Hurley's fantastic photographs of the expedition which are liberally sprinkled throughout the text. If the words don't get you, the pictures will. --John Crace --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Stylish, high quality collector's edition Hardy Boat Owner Indisputably, Shackleton's compelling account of his epic adventure is a classic. Sailing Today

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Format: Paperback
South is Ernest Shackleton's much praised report from his second expedition to the South Pole. The plan was to sail to the Weddell sea and march across the land mass of Antartica via the pole to the opposite side where another ship would collect the men and bring them home.
Naturally nothing went right. Shackleton's ship, the Endurance, was trapped in pack ice which sealed her in and eventually crushed her. Abandoning the ship, and unable to reach the continental land mass itself, Shackleton led his men from ice floe to ice floe, setting up camps and abandoning them when the floes broke in two (as they frequently did) eventually ending up on a tiny, unexplored island with only three ships boats to provide shelter and living off the scarce resources of an inhospitible land.
In simply the bravest move I have ever heard about, Shackleton decided that to reach help he had to sail across the southern Atlantic in a tiny open rowing boat to the island of South Georgia - over three hundred miles away. Once there and safely landed he then had to march across the desolate island to reach the whaling communities on the far side - something that had been thought of as impossible.
South made Shackleton's name as an explorer - and you can see why. The story is staggering - even more impressive when you consider that only one of Shacklton's party perished in their two year stay on the ice.
If I have any criticisms it is that lack of any review or explanation of the book by an editor. Penguin Classics, their reprinting of the works of the Classical writers, are all prefaced by an editor who provides much of the back story and explanations of the times in which the books were written.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I was not sure what I was expecting from my first free Kindle story. I have to say that I very pleasantly surprised, as Shackleton tells his story in a very matter of fact way that still fails to hide the sheer drama of what happened with his expedition. It would appear that almost every aspect of the expedition went awry from Day One, and yet he comes across as either a compulsive optimist or else a prime example of the 'Keep Calm and Carry On' brigade. He tells his story by the facts, and it is up to the reader to add in the countless days between notable events or to understand the paucity of the food. What he does convey is the sheer enormity of the Antarctic, the remoteness, the simplicity of their equipment and the initiative of his men. It is far more than just a diary of events, and the imagery that it conjures up transforms this into a spectacular tale from an era where we were continuing to push the envelope of what man could achieve. I suppose that some people will also enjoy the opportunity to judge Shackleton as a leader of men, and this book certainly does give an insight into the loneliness of his position, the stark options that he had to choose between and the risks that he led his men into. After reading this book, I intend to re-visit the TV mini series with Kenneth Branagh as I remember this as a very strong portrayal of the expeditionShackleton [DVD] [2002].
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Format: Paperback
Not being a writer myself, I feel that my simple use of words will struggle to give this book justice. It is a frank, first person account of an expedition that bordered on disaster, of heroic endurance, and leadership that you seldom hear of.
The book is similar to Shackleton's first writing, 'The Heart of the Antarctic' in that it is a report and it's style is very matter of fact. This limits the early and later chapters, because they chronicle and summarise the administrative parts of the expedition. Although it is important to understand the organisation, logistics and motives for Shackleton and his comrades, it does not provide the thrills that this book is famous for.
When the thrills come they hit you hard, and Shackleton's matter of fact style then begins to help you become absorbed in the way these men faced insurmountable odds, and continued bravely, knowing that failure would mean certain death. I found myself pausing during reading, just to sit and think about how terrible and helpless their situation became. It was at the most dire occasions that Shackleton's awe inspiring leadership and self belief showed most. I felt there was much to learn from his approach: 'A man must shape himself to a new mark directly the old one goes to ground' Wise words from an exceptional man.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This is an epic story of a struggle against very harsh conditions by fifty-eight or so Antarctic explorers. As a tale it is very powerfully told because it is related in the manner of a mission report eliminating much of any emotional strain being felt by the author. Shackleton emerges as a superlative leader, surrounded by ordinary men caught up in an extraordinary feat of survival and endurance.

As a Kindle book it would have been greatly improved by the inclusion of maps and any illustrations mentioned in the text.
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Format: Paperback
This is Shackleton's own account of the now legendary Antartic expedition, a story of one of the most astonishing feats of polar escapology. It is an intensely dramatic story, but what sets this new edition apart are the additonal notes by Peter King who has examined the latest research on the whole affair. This provides a fascinating insight into what actually occurred, as we learn about the oversights in the planning of the expedition that led to near-disaster. To accompany the prose are the stunning photographs taken by Frank Hurley, the expedition photographer. These now classic photos are in themselves a superb essay on composition, contrast and dramatic lighting. All in all, a thoroughly absorbing read, and the numerous photos and captions make it equally good for just dipping into now and then. The large format of this Pimlico edition making it ideal for the coffee table at Xmas.
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