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Endurance: Shackleton's Incredible Voyage (1959)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Alfred Lansing is a Chicago born writer and journalist that is best known as the author of the novel “Endurance.” During his time working as a journalist, the author wrote for several papers including the likes of “Colliers” among many other magazines in the United States.

He has also been a writer and editor for “Time, Inc. Books.” In his earlier years, he joined the US Navy and was a model soldier who went on to be awarded with a Purple Heart after serving with distinction in World War II.

The author then went to North Park College between 1946 and 1948 and then to Northwestern University to study journalism between 1948 and 1950. At the university, he was the editor of the weekly paper until he graduated to go work for United Press.

Given his interest in polar studies, he would soon apply and be admitted as a member of the Cambridge, England based Scott Polar Research Institute in 1957.
It is perhaps from this interest that he would come to learn about the Antarctic ordeal by Shackleton that would ultimately evolve into his bestselling novel “Endurance: Shackleton’s Incredible Voyage.”

He would then become a freelance writer, even as he harbored dreams of becoming a fiction author. His debut, which is an account of the Antarctic explorations of Ernest Shackleton, was first published in 1959.

To pen his book, Lansing interviewed several surviving members of the expedition. He also gained access to the personal diaries and journals of eight survivors while researching the book.

“Endurance” by Alfred Lansing is an unparalleled ordeal and adventure of Sir Ernest Shackleton who would be left stranded in Antarctica during the winter of 2015. The crew was forced to row nearly 900 miles in high seas ravaged by storms.

The ordeal would inspire Lansing’s best selling title “Endurance,” a memoir written by Shackleton and “The Way to Xanadu,” a stirring account by Alexander. Shackleton had in 1914 sailed with a crew of nearly thirty men to Antarctica hoping to be the first man to travel across the continent.

But Endurance, his ship had subsequently been crushed and trapped by ice as they traversed the Weddell Sea. The crew had been forced into a nightmare of near starvation and cold as they waited for rescue.

Making use of crew member journals, many of which have never been published, Alexander writes a compelling story of boldness and courage in the face of impossible odds. She boldly and succinctly captures the terrible landscape and the men’s characters as they persevered and fought for their lives.

What makes this such a great work is that it comes with more than 170 previously unpublished photos by Frank J Hurley, who was the lead photographer for the expedition. The photographer artfully made beautiful tributes to the fortitude of the men and the ice.

According to one of the men;s journals, not one of them succumbed in a several week ordeal account that bears witness to the strength of the human spirit and the excellent leadership ability by Shackleton.

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