I origionally emailed this to Dr. Berg, but I figured I'll post it on the blog as well.
When I had ordered Endurance on Amazon.com and looked at the cover, I had thought that it was going to be one of those strange, incredibly boring novels that you read in the third grade. Upon my surprise, I am actually taking a liking to the book. The author Alfred Lansing, does a great job of using vivid imagery, as well as descriptive detail. The story line is also very easy to follow. In the first chapter, the author was able to hook me in by using a flash-forward to let the reader know what is to come in the future. Before even reading the book, it was highly predictable that something traumatic would happen to the ship. If nothing happened, then the book would probably be a flop and wouldn't sell too many copies, so why not give away the most exciting scenes in the beginning and let the reader read and build up to what is to come in the future?
The captain, Sir Ernest Shackleton is someone who I would describe to be a very bold man. He is also very highly motivated. He has had a large amount of experience in the past, therefore he was very motivated to lead the crew of 28 men across the Antarctic. Shackleton purchased a ship, originally named Polaris for $67,000, which in today's economy would cost around $700,000 to $1,000,000. I was surprised that someone would make such a risky purchase, but Shackleton had set his dream, and who can put a cost on a dream? It also helped that he was heavily funded for his voyage. I have really taken a liking to the Shackleton. He has a sense of humor, as well as a great leader. When Perce Blackboro was found to be smuggled on board, Shackleton did not seem too angry. He simply said that if there was no more food left and the crew had to eat someone, he'd be the first to go.
When the ship had encountered itself to be stuck in ice the first time, I was very surprised to see how the team worked together to try and pull the ship out of it. Day by day, moment by moment, the team worked together for the entire day to pull the ship out. Eventually, they had found a separation and were able to pull through, but that would not have happened if the entire crew weren't on board to get the ship out. Overall, I am really taking a liking to the book. It's no 50 Shades of Grey, but at least it isn't War and Peace.