The White Darkness

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About The Book

‘A riveting, exciting and thoroughly compelling tale of adventure’  JOHN GRISHAM on David Grann's The Lost City of Z
‘A wonderful story of a lost age of heroic exploration’  Sunday Times on The Lost City of Z
‘Marvellous ... An engrossing book whose protagonist could out-think Indiana Jones’  Daily Telegraph on The Lost City of Z


One man's perilous quest to cross Antarctica in the footsteps of Shackleton.

Henry Worsley
was a devoted husband and father and a decorated British special forces officer who believed in honour and sacrifice. He was also a man obsessed. He spent his life idolizing Ernest Shackleton, the 19th-century polar explorer, who tried to become the first person to reach the South Pole and later sought to cross Antarctica on foot. Shackleton never completed his journeys, but he repeatedly rescued his men from certain death and emerged as one of the greatest leaders in history.

Worsley felt an overpowering connection to those expeditions. He was related to one of Shackleton's men, Frank Worsley, and spent a fortune collecting artefacts from their epic treks across the continent. He modelled his military command on Shackleton's legendary skills and was determined to measure his own powers of endurance against them. He would succeed where Shackleton had failed, in the most brutal landscape in the world.

In 2008, Worsley set out across Antarctica with two other descendants of Shackleton's crew, battling the freezing, desolate landscape, life-threatening physical exhaustion and hidden crevasses. Yet when he returned home he felt compelled to go back. On November 2015, at age 55, Worsley bid farewell to his family and embarked on his most perilous quest: to walk across Antarctica alone.

David Grann tells Worsley's remarkable story with the intensity and power that have led him to be called ‘simply the best narrative nonfiction writer working today’. Illustrated with more than 50 stunning photographs from Worsley's and Shackleton's journeys, The White Darkness is both a gorgeous keepsake volume and a spellbinding story of courage, love and a man pushing himself to the extremes of human capacity.

 
Praise for David Grann's Killers of the Flower Moon:
 
‘A riveting true story of greed, serial murder and racial injustice’  JON KRAKAUER
 
‘A fiercely entertaining mystery story and a wrenching exploration of evil’  KATE ATKINSON

‘A fascinating account of a tragic and forgotten chapter in the history of the American West’  JOHN GRISHAM  
 
‘Disturbing and riveting...Grann has proved himself a master of spinning delicious, many-layered mysteries that also happen to be true...It will sear your soul’  DAVE EGGERS, New York Times Book Review

‘An extraordinary story with extraordinary pace and atmosphere’  Sunday Times
 
‘A marvel of detective-like research and narrative verve’ Financial Times

About The Author

Matt Richman

David Grann is a staff writer at The New Yorker. He has written about everything from New York City's antiquated water tunnels to the hunt for the giant squid. His stories have appeared in several anthologies. He has written for the New York Times Magazine, the Atlantic Monthly, the Washington Post, the Wall Street Journal and the New Republic. He lives in New York with his wife and two children.

Product Details

  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster UK (November 2018)
  • Length: 160 pages
  • ISBN13: 9781471178023

Raves and Reviews

‘Will inspire some, just as it frightens others… the story of what addiction can do to you: addiction to a place, to suffering and to the heroic idea of what it meant to be British’

– Evening Standard

'History tends to favour Captain Scott's polar legend, but Worsley preferred Shackleton... Worsley makes it to Shackleton's mark and the pole beyond, then returns twice more, including an attempted solo crossing... For a lesson in tenacity, it's up there.'

– Strong Words magazine

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