Four Against the Arctic: Shipwrecked for Six Years at the Top of the World

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Simon & Schuster, 2003 - 304 Seiten
6 Rezensionen
When David Roberts came across a reference to four Russian sailors who had survived for six years on a barren Arctic island, he was incredulous. An expert on the literature of adventure, Roberts had never heard the story and doubted its veracity. His quest to find the true story turned into a near-obsession that culminated with his own journey to the same desolate island. In Four Against the Arctic Roberts shares the remarkable story that he discovered, perhaps the most amazing survival tale ever recorded. In 1743 a Russian ship bound for Arctic walrus-hunting grounds was blown off course and trapped in ice off the coast of Svalbard (Spitzbergen). Four sailors went ashore with only two days' supplies to look for an abandoned hut they knew about on the island. They found it and returned to tell their shipmates the good news, only to find that their ship had vanished, apparently crushed and sunk by the ice. The men survived more than six years until another ship blown off course rescued them. During that time they made a bow and arrows from driftwood (Svalbard has no trees) and killed nine polar bears in self-defense. They survived largely on reindeer meat, killing 250 of the animals during their ordeal. Fascinated as he was by this remarkable story, Roberts wondered how it had dwindled into obscurity. For two years he researched the tale in libraries and archives in the United States, France, and Russia. In Russia he traveled to the sailors' hometown, where he met the last survivors of their families, who knew the story from an oral tradition passed down for more than 250 years. Finally, with three companions he organized an expedition to the barren island of Edgeoya in southeast Svalbard, where he spent three weeks looking for remnants of the sailors' lost hut and walking the shores while pondering the men's astonishing survival. Four Against the Arctic is a riveting book about man versus nature and a delightfully engaging journey deep into an obsession with historical rediscovery. But it is more even than that: It is a meditation on the genius of survival against impossible odds that makes a story so inspirational that it still fires the imagination centuries later.

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LibraryThing Review

Nutzerbericht  - DrBrewhaha - LibraryThing

Roberts explores the 18th century tale of four Russian seamen who were marooned on a desolate island in the Arctic for more than six years with almost nothing. The tale was little known and Roberts ... Vollständige Rezension lesen

LibraryThing Review

Nutzerbericht  - stephaniechase - LibraryThing

Well-written book about four Russian sailors forced to overwinter in one of the most remote islands in the Arctic -- for six years. The story of the sailors themselves is fascinating, although not ... Vollständige Rezension lesen

Inhalt

Prologue
1
Driftwood
7
Two Lances and a Lamp
21
Urheberrecht

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Über den Autor (2003)

David Roberts was born on May 8, 1970. He is a British children's illustrator. He has illustrated a large number of books in both black and white and colour. he has worked with such well-known authors as Philip Ardagh (on the Eddie Dickens and Unlikely Exploits series), G.P. Taylor (on the Mariah Mundi series), Chris Priestley (on the Tales of Terror series), Mick Jackson (on Ten Sorry Tales and The Bears of England), and Susan Price (on the Olly Spellmaker series). Mouse Noses on Toast by Daren King won the Nestle Smarties Book Prize (ages 6 -8 years) in 2006, after which King and Roberts collaborated on other titles including Peter the Penguin Pioneer, Sensible Hare and the Case of Carrots and The Frightfully Friendly Ghosties series. He was shortlisted for the Kate Greenaway Medal in 2015 for his title Tinder.

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