by Andrea Barrett
audio book: 13.25 hours
This is the story of a fictional Arctic expedition in the 1850s. The main character, Erasmus, is in his early 40s and feels that his life has been one failure after another. When young family friend Zeke decides to travel to the Arctic in search of a lost exploring expedition, he asks Erasmus to travel with him. Erasmus sees this as his chance to finally succeed at something and decides to go. The voyage doesn't go as planned however, and the crew soon realizes that Zeke is really out to make a name for himself rather than find the missing explorers.
Eventually Erasmus makes it back home but the story doesn't end there. Instead it follows the reaction of his family and the town in general to his return and his physical and mental recovery.
On the whole I enjoyed the book but I did feel that it bogged down in places. But then something happens near the end of the story that I totally did not expect, and I was completely drawn into the it again. In fact, that final few chapters made all the slow parts worth it for me.
In the end I must say that I liked this book but I didn't love it. The ending was great though, and that made up for some of the other problems.
I heard of this book from Dawn at She Is Too Fond of Books in a comment she made on my Friday Finds post back in December '08.
PS. I forgot to mention that the narrator of this audio book was George Guidall. I've mentioned before that he is an excellent narrator and his work on this book was no exception.