Good biography of Scott,
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This review is from: Scott of The Antarctic (Hardcover)
If you care to look at my other reviews you may notice I have read a number of biographies of Robert Falcon Scott. I had thought that another one might be a rather dull read - but not so. Having enjoyed Reginald Pound's biography of Lord Mountevans, I decided to give this one a go, and I am so glad I did.
Pound writes in a very readable style, so the book is just right for anyone interested in Scott for the first time. But it also offers a lot for those who already know a little more. It relies heavily on correspondence between Scott and his wife and between Scott and others and though Pound lets these tell the story, he does not shrink from his own informed comment. He also corresponded with a number of expedition members who were still alive in 1966 (when this biography was written) and accesses valuable insights which are now lost, now that none of those explorers of yesteryear are any longer with us.
Pound clearly admired Scott, and that shows in the writing. But this is no hagiography. He makes pointed references to the now well-known criticisms of Scott's character and judgement which may have contributed to Scott and his companions' eventual demise in 1912. Unlike Huntford (Scott and Amundsen 1979) his criticism's are measured and nowhere approach character assassination.
The book lacks an index, has only a single map, has one section of photos which provide nothing new and references to sources are somewhat lacking in detail. That said, I found this a very enjoyable book and despite its age, is well worth reading.