About this item
Capturing a crucial moment in the history of exploration, the mid-nineteenth century romance with the Arctic, Andrea Barrett focuses on a particular expedition and its accompanying scholar-naturalist, Erasmus Darwin Wells. Through his eyes, we meet the Narwhal's crew and its commander-obsessed with the search for an open polar sea-and encounter the far-north culture of the Esquimaux. In counterpoint, we see the women left behind in Philadelphia, explorers only in imagination. Together, those who travel and those who stay weave a web of myth and mystery. And finally they discover-as all explorers do-not what was always there and never needed discovering, but the state of their own souls.
Part adventure narrative, part love story, this extraordinary chronicle captures a crucial moment in the history of exploration, the mid-nineteenth-century romance with the mystery of the Arctic. Combining fact and fiction, Andrea Barrett focuses on Erasmus Darwin Wells, a scholar-naturalist accompanying the expedition of the Narwhal. Through his eyes we meet the various crew members and the expedition's blustery commander, obsessed with the search for an open polar sea, and we experience the wild, disturbing beauties of that last unexplored region.
Number of Pages: 399
Genre: Fiction + Literature Genres
Sub-Genre: Human Qualities + Behavior, Society + Social Issues, Travel + Voyages, Literary Genres + Types of Novels, Biographical / General, Action + Thrillers, Types of Characters, Historical / Exploration + Discovery
Publisher: W W Norton & Co Inc
Author: Andrea Barrett
Street Date: September 1, 1999
Item Number (DPCI): 248-25-8879