Endurance: Shackleton’s Incredible Voyage

Endurance: Shackleton’s Incredible Voyage by Alfred Lansing

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

First of all, I want to say a profound “WOW” at the trials and adventures Ernest Shackleton and his men went through as described in this book.

It seems so incredible that if it were the subject of a faithful film adaptation, the sequential setbacks and trials one after another would render the film almost “unrealistic”, yet these events happened in real life as we know it. It is rarely the case that a ‘failure’ of a mission can turn into such a monumental triumph showcasing the determination and willpower of the human race.

As for the book itself, then I initially found it tiring and troublesome to read paragraphs where words about sea-fare navigation and descriptions of ice were everywhere. I had to consult the Internet/a Dictionary to find out what a floe was, and I was similarly confused by the sailor terminology regarding different parts of a ship/boat. Some parts were harder to read through than others, but if these men could survive and trudge such an ordeal, I could surely read about it.
As the book’s name, I endured and pushed forward, doing my best to pick up what I could along the way.

As such, I can proudly say that I have been rewarded with a true story of epic proportions, the details of which I will leave to any future reader. To think that this also happened in the midst of World War 1 is also a fun fact to think about. While Europe was knee deep in blood, these men were stuck in the Antarctic with no way of contacting the outside world. Little did they know what was happening in the very homelands they originated from!

I myself struggle to endure freezing water in the Winter mornings despite my attempts to brave it, what then of men who endured such ice cold, bitter conditions that their blisters froze underneath their skin feeling like pebbles embedded into their bodies?

It is easy to have adventure and exploration romanticised via broadcast media in the modern world, but this book does a good job of keeping that epic journey theme and also conveying the absolute depths of hardship that undoubtedly ensue.

I definitely recommend this book to all who are interested in learning about this true story and who want to gain an insight into what it means to be men of courage, order and determination.

Perhaps one day I would like to visit the islands mentioned in this book, just to walk in the same footsteps of those brave men 100 years ago.

Leave a Reply