5 Living Books about Frozen Exploration
Here are five recommended books about people who explored some of the frozen regions of the Earth.
1. Everest: The Remarkable Story of Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay by Alexandra Stewart, Joe Todd-Stanton (Illustrations)
From Goodreads, "In the late morning of May 29, 1953, the sun was shining brightly and a gentle breeze was blowing on the highest elevation of the world--and two men were there to witness it for the first time ever. Their names were Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay, and they had ascended Everest. This is the breathtaking story of how two very different, yet equally determined, men battled frost-biting temperatures, tumbling ice rocks, powerful winds, and death-defying ridges to reach the top of the world's highest mountain. Combining fresh and contemporary illustrations by Joe Todd-Stanton with Alexandra Stewart's captivating writing, this unique narrative tells the story of how Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay made their mark on the world from birth right up to their final days and the impact they've had on Nepal today."
Full color picture book, 64 pages, reading level 8-12 years
2. Ice, wind, rock: Douglas Mawson in the Antarctic by Peter Gouldthorpe
From Booktopia, "Douglas Mawson is a true Australian hero, and one of the great Antarctic explorers. He was the first man to reach the South Magnetic Pole, and led Australia's first Antarctic expedition.
This is a story of adventure and survival, as Mawson faces enormous challenges and triumphs."
Full color picture book, 64 pages, 7-10 years
3. Penguin Road by Ken Dalziel
Describes the life of Australian explorers during their expedition to Antarctica in 1953.
For 12+ years, 80 pages.
4. High Adventure: The True Story of the First Ascent of Everest by Edmund Hillary
From Amazon, "Fear lives among Everest's mighty ice-fluted faces and howls across its razor-sharp crags. Gnawing at reason and enslaving minds, it has killed many and defeated countless others. But in 1953, Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay stared into its dark eye and did not waver. On May 29, they pushed spent bodies and aching lungs past the achievable to pursue the impossible. At a terminal altitude of 29,028 feet, they stood triumphant atop the highest peak in the world.
With nimble words and a straightforward style, New Zealand mountaineering legend Hillary recollects the bravery and frustration, the agony and glory that marked his Everest odyssey. From the 1951 expedition that led to the discovery of the Southern Route, through the grueling Himalayan training of 1952, and on to the successful 1953 expedition led by Colonel John Hunt, Hillary conveys in precise language the mountain's unforgiving conditions. In explicit detail he recalls an Everest where chaotic icefalls force costly detours, unstable snow ledges promise to avalanche at the slightest misstep, and brutal weather shifts from pulse-stopping cold to fiendish heat in mere minutes.
In defiance of these torturous conditions, Hillary remains enthusiastic and never hesitates in his quest for the summit. Despite the enormity of his and Norgay's achievement, he regards himself, Norgay, and the other members of his expedition as hardworking men, not heroes. And while he never would have reached the top without practiced skill and technical competence, his thrilling memoir speaks first to his admiration of the human drive to explore, to understand, to risk, and to conquer."
For older readers, 245 pages.
5. Scott's Last Expedition: The Journals by Robert Falcon Scott
From Goodreads, "Scott's Last Expedition: The Journals is the explorer's detailed account of his time in Antarctica. The team's daily progress towards their final goal is recorded in Scott's vivid, personal narrative, as well as his impressions of the harsh conditions, the stark beauty of the tundra, and his own increasingly desperate ambition to beat his rivals to the Pole. Shortly before he died, Scott wrote: "Had we lived, I should have had a tale to tell of the hardihood, endurance, and courage of my companions which would have stirred the heart of every Englishman." Robert Falcon Scott and his men died, but their story lives on in his journals."
For older readers, 591 readers.