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The Worst Journey in the World Paperback – Dec 23 2011


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As Apsley Cherry-Garrard states in his introduction to the harrowing story of the Scott expedition to the South Pole, "Polar Exploration is at once the cleanest and most isolated way of having a bad time which has been devised." Cherry-Garrard's The Worst Journey in the World is a gripping account of an expedition gone disastrously wrong. The youngest member of Scott's team, the author was later part of the rescue party that eventually found the frozen bodies of Scott and three men who had accompanied Scott on the final push to the Pole. These deaths would haunt Cherry-Garrard for the rest of his life as he questioned the decisions he had made and the actions he had taken in the days leading up to the Polar Party's demise.

Prior to this sad denouement, Cherry-Garrard's account is filled with details of scientific discovery and anecdotes of human resilience in a harsh environment. Each participant in the Scott expedition is brought fully to life. Cherry-Garrard's recollections are supported by diary excerpts and accounts from other teammates. Despite the sad fate of Scott, the reader will grudgingly agree with the closing words of The Worst Journey in the World: "Exploration is the physical expression of the Intellectual Passion. And I tell you, if you have the desire for knowledge and the power to give it physical expression, go out and explore.... If you march your Winter Journeys you will have your reward, so long as all you want is a penguin's egg." --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Library Journal

Cherry-Gerrard was the only survivor of Scott's last journey to the South Pole, and was a member of the search party that later discovered the remains of Scott and his comrades. His story was originally published in a limited edition in the 1920s but has not been available in the United States since.-- MR
Copyright 1989 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Amazon.com: 40 reviews
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
useless without maps and illustrations May 6 2014
By Scott Steves - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Well, maybe not entirely useless, but almost so. One of the great things about this book is the author's collection of maps and images from other explorers, none of which are accessible in this Kindle edition.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Great adventure May 4 2014
By Eric Mascarin Perigault - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
The author was in Scott's expedition to the South Pole. Explain everything from boarding the ship in England until his return to that place three years later. From the very beginning, the sea journey, the story is exciting. Tell us all preparations on Ross Island. His journey in search of the Emperor Penguin eggs. And finally, the journey to the South Pole with Scott. Although twelve men from the base on the island of Ross went out, only five will go into the last part to the Pole. Scott arrives 34 days after the Norwegian Amundsen and in his return trip dies along with his other four fellow just 11 miles from camp. The history is overwhelming, fantastic, amazing, awesome. Only Magellan's voyage I found it so exciting. Cherry- Garrard reconstructs the story from his memories, his diary and the diaries of the other explorers. Where he think the story is better told by others, no doubt mention, even Scott himself. At the end takes a balance and tries to explain why Scott failed. Some bitterness in these last lines is noted. Although the book is almost 1000 pages one can read it in one sitting. Bring four maps that are indispensable to settle since the maps of Antarctica are not easily found. Some have written that it is the best book of adventures ever written. Maybe.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Kindle version lacks maps and images Dec 21 2013
By Jonny - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This is a great book. You should know that if you get the Kindle version, you won't get any maps or images. Every bit of this book references different glaciers, peaks, sounds, and sledge routes that lose meaning without some frame of reference. I'd suggest getting the paperback or hardcover version of this book to truly enjoy it.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Great book but there were no illustrations with this digital edition May 24 2013
By Amazon Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The original book had extensive illustrations but this digital version does not seem to include any, pretty disappointing as they significantly enhance the original book.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Worst Journey is Detailed and Awesome June 24 2014
By Claire-ty - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Gosh this is a big book! I stuck with it, however, and found it really educating in the details of Antarctic exploration of that period. I was struck by the pre-WW1 optimism and also the 'pluck' of these Brits. It's hard to know if there was a cultural filter against complaining in that culture, but across multiple authors a positive attitude prevails despite some of the most miserable conditions imaginable.

The actual Worst Journey is just one of their many journeys, but it reflects the drive for advancing science. Such misery and risk! All to fetch penguin eggs in the winter. All of their journeys were quite risky and miserable as well as rewarding.

These were iron tough, smart, objective people who were about scientific knowledge above all. Flag waving and the goal of the South Pole were subservient to the first love, science. That emphasis likely killed Scott. The whole of their story makes a fascinating read. Highly recommended if you have the attention span and interest in cool-headed adventure.


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