To the Edges of the Earth by Edward J. Larson

To the Edges of the Earth

In the spirit of bestselling adventure narratives In the Kingdom of Ice, In the Heart of the Sea, and The Lost City of Z, Pulitzer Prize–winning historian Edward J. Larson's To the Edges of the Earth brings to life the climax of the age of exploration: in the year 1909 expeditions to the Arctic, Antarctica, and Himalaya pushed human accomplishment to the extremes and set records for altitude and the farthest north and south.In 1909, three ...

Details To the Edges of the Earth

TitleTo the Edges of the Earth
Release DateMar 13th, 2018
PublisherWilliam Morrow
GenreNonfiction, History, Adventure, Science

Reviews To the Edges of the Earth

  • Jerrie (redwritinghood)
    This was a well-written, thoroughly researched book about polar exploration. The author focused on the successful trips to the north and south poles, as well as the “third pole” of the highest mountain, in 1909. I felt that the third pole story didn’t fit well with the other two and seemed added in to emphasize public fascination with these explorers and the extremes that they went to. Overall, this was a fascinating book.
  • Nancy
    One hundred years ago the world was reeling from WWI. Every value and belief once the foundation of civilization was called into question by the war.But before the 'War to End All Wars' didn't end war, men were going on quests to conquer the unknown regions of ice. They faced gruesome suffering--loss of body parts that had frozen, physical exertion in extreme conditions, starvation, threats of crevasses that appeared out of nowhere and thin ice o...
  • Carlos
    Nice narrative of these three bigwigs in exploration of the early 20th century, it was a good effort to put all these three narratives in perspective regarding the times their respective countries were going through. If you like exploration narratives and like polar exploration retelling then this is the book for you .
  • Pamela
    Historically Credible . . . Compellingly Readable . . . Fascinating Perspective with Relevant Sub-Topics . . . Well Written with an alluring Contemporary Voice . . . Seemingly Thoroughly Researched. It really is a fascinating read. Not perfect, but then again, my copy is a galley; I was blessed to received a complimentary copy from the publisher through an e-newsletter giveaway. I simply don't understand why this book has not received more widesp...
  • Holly
    A fine cultural history by Larson (I also enjoyed his earlier book about the Scopes Trial, Summer for the Gods). I liked the rotating triple foci - Arctic-North Pole, Antarctica-South Pole, and "top of the world"-Himalayan peaks. One aspect that made this different from some of the other histories of Shackleton, Peary, Cook, et al. was the extent of Larson's attention to the animals on these expeditions. He appears to make an effort to always des...
  • Joe Jones
    I am not sure if the men in this book were extraordinarily brave or just a bit crazy. It probably is a bit of both. The conditions they experienced on their quests to be the first to the poles was mind blowing. I don't know how they could go back again and again trying to achieve their goals. Especially as others paid the ultimate price of their lives in their failed attempts. A perfect read for this colder than normal winter we are experiencing....
  • John
    I enjoy books that that make me wonder what drives people to do things like this. This experience had to be miserable and to want to do it again makes me wonder what drives that thought process. I do wish I would have had some prior knowledge to these events before hand as it would help me understand things a little better. I won this great book on GoodReads and like I do with most my wins I will be paying it forward by giving my win either to a ...
  • Rachel
    I liked it. At least in an interesting and horrifying way. I can safely say that this book completely convinced me to never even consider Polar explorations. Too cold and brutal by far.As for the book itself, I thought it focused way more on the North Pole than the South, and overall way more on the poles than on the mountain climbing. I think there were only two chapters on climbing K2 vs the other 9 for the poles? And the chapters switching foc...
  • Sally Ann Moyer
    Interesting story of how Peary and Henson made it to the North Pole (or did they really?) and other explorers reaching the South Pole and "altitude pole" in the same year. The story jumps around so much though, that I found myself committing to just one storyline (the North Pole) and skimming over the others. Energizing read on human determination with some lessons we can put into our own lives today. Matthew Henson, who did most of the work and ...
  • Gary Detrick
    If it had been the first book I've read on polar exploration I would have given it 4 stars. Edward's blending of the stories read well with the intermingeling of the three expeditions. A very interesting year in exploration. I did learn about Prince Luigi Amedeo, Duke of the Abruzzi, whom I had no knowledge about and did throughly enjoy the read. After reading books like, In the Kingdom of Ice, Magellan: Over the Edge of the World, Aspley Cherry-...
  • Abby
    An entertaining look at three of the most stalwart adventurers of the Age of Exploration. I've read about various polar expeditions before, but Luigi Amedeo and his ascent of K2 was new to me. The book is nicely written and well-researched. It's a fine starting point if you want to learn more about any of the topics covered.I received an uncorrected proof of this book through Goodreads Giveaways. I'm very glad to have gotten it. An entertaining a...
  • Lori L (She Treads Softly)
    To the Edges of the Earth: 1909, the Race for the Three Poles, and the Climax of the Age of Exploration by Edward J. Larson is an examination of the most adventurous year of all time.1909 can be said to be the climactic year in the modern age of adventure-based exploration. The three poles to be conquered in 1909 were the North Pole, the South Pole, and the so-called Pole of Altitude in the Himalayas. (The South pole was sometimes divided into th...
  • Anna
    Three expeditions for the extremes of the earth in 1909. Two are well known - Shackleton's attempt on the south pole in which he fails to reach the pole but his team reach the magnetic pole and set a new "furthest south" records; and Peary's claim on the north pole that has been widely discredited. Less well known is the unsuccessful climb of K2 (the pole of altitude) by Prince Luigi Amedeo, the Duke of Abruzzi, that nevertheless resulted in a lo...
  • Kristi Richardson
    “The meaning of heroism changes with time and conditions.”I received this book as part of the Goodreads Giveaway program. It was an excellent overview of the three explorations accomplished in 1909. Admiral Peary’s race to the North Pole, Ernest Shackleton’s race to the South Pole and lastly, Luigi Amedeo, the Duke of Abruzzi’s climb to the highest peak of K2 for that time. I enjoyed reading about the challenges these brave men endured ...
  • Gail
    Earlier in the book, I would have rated it as either four or five stars. It was certainly exciting to read about the adventures of Robert Peary, Ernest Shackleton, Douglas Mawson, and others as they sought to be discoverers of the North and South Poles. Unfortunately, you only get snippets of what really happened, which is why it pays to read entire books of the above subjects. Author Edward J. Larson introduced a man I never even heard of, Italy...
  • Jasmine
    Larson is a talented writer; it must take a lot of talent to take such a fascinating topic and turn it into an awful book. I was really excited to read this book, but as I read on, my rating kept dropping. The book was such a slog to get through, and I really should have given up, but like the explorers in the book, I persevered. First, it was difficult for me to keep track of who’s who, and the timeline. The book kept jumping from one trek to ...
  • Woody
    In 1909 there were multiple expeditions to reach the north and south pole, as well as the summit of K2 in the Himalayas. This book not only provides fairly detailed accounts of these harrowing journeys, but also provides historical context for them. You learn about the fundraising, the recruitment of people, the journeys themselves, how they were publicized and the aftermaths. There was intense competition between explorers: Peary, Cook, Amundsen...
  • Jimmy Page
    It is incredible to think about how explores ventured to the edges of the earth with primitive materials and equipment. This book was a little drive for those were not passionate about the outdoors and expiration. I’ve recently gotten much more into rock climbing and have been following this lifestyle. Seeing the explores today battle peaks like Meru, Everest and K2 and the difficulties they face make you wonder how people in the early 1900s ne...
  • Michele Smith
    I really enjoy these types of adventure stories. Shackleton and Peary are still renowned for their accomplishments, but I knew very little about them. While I got a little bogged down in some of the details of the expeditions, overall it was an interesting account of some of the most famous explorers of their time.
  • Brent Burch
    A thrilling tale, of a moment in time, when three different men set out to conquer the edges of the earth. (The south pole, the north pole, and K2 in the Himalayas)Through harrowing adventures you relive the exploits of these men as they try to go farther than anyone had gone before.Very good read!
  • Kate
    A fascinating book that shows how some men' personalities drive them to do things the rest of us think is crazy. It is hard for me to understand why anyone would risk life and limb to do what they did. I am basically the stay at home and read about it person. If you love books about humans matching themselves against nature this is the definitely the book for you.
  • Lee Adams
    A good compliation of a lot of great stories - Shackleton, Scott, Amundsen, Scott, Cook, Peary, and the like. I still think reading each separately is worth the investment, if you're not that committed this book is a great alternative.
  • J.J.
    3.5. Parts of this book were fascinating, parts were drudgery, but the race for the poles was truly a thing. I can only imagine if social media was around instead of newspapers! I can tell the research was thorough and props in the audio version for shouting out to the archives and libraries.
  • Anne
    A lot of repetition and jumping around from the Arctic to the Antarctic to Himalaya. It was interesting to get the awareness of all 'edges' being reached (for) at the same time, but I would rather have read three books.
  • Chris
    Great structure, fun readMust read for anyone inspired by exploration and the anatomy of survival. A perfect companion on a long trip into nature.
  • Sarah
    Interesting time period. Well written. Personalities of protagonists lacking.
  • Donna
    Excellent book regarding the poles and the experiences of the people involved.
  • Erin
    Review forthcoming.
  • Kimberly Brooks
    Really well-written and a fascinating read, but I just kept thinking to myself, WHY IN THE WORLD would people willingly put themselves through all that just to be the first to a pole???