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Antarctica: An Intimate Portrait of the World’s Most Mysterious Continent (Englisch) Taschenbuch – 1. März 2012

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  • Taschenbuch: 416 Seiten
  • Verlag: Bloomsbury UK; Auflage: Export/Airside ed (1. März 2012)
  • Sprache: Englisch
  • ISBN-10: 1408815427
  • ISBN-13: 978-1408815427
  • Größe und/oder Gewicht: 15,4 x 4,1 x 23,6 cm
  • Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: 5.0 von 5 Sternen  Alle Rezensionen anzeigen (1 Kundenrezension)
  • Amazon Bestseller-Rang: Nr. 444.486 in Fremdsprachige Bücher (Siehe Top 100 in Fremdsprachige Bücher)



Brimful of science, heroism, tragedy and laugh-out-loud humour, Antarctica is an exciting an informative read. BBC Focus This is a fascinating insight into one of the most inhospitable places on Earth and its implications for the world's future ... The informative and touching account of the expanse's beauty leaves the reader desperate to visit the area, but also desperately sad for its future. Irish Examiner Gabrielle Walker's book comprehensively brings us up to date on the continent that is so much more than ice and seasonal penguins ... Many people will approach this book with images from David Attenborough's Frozen Planet stamped on their minds. Can it add to the live footage we've seen? Emphatically yes. Guardian This is not just a highly accessible ency-clopedia of Antarctic science. It interlaces researchers' stories with natural history, tales of the 'heroic age' of exploration and pas-sages that viscerally describe the cold, isola-tion and beauty of the environment. Nature The early Antarctic expeditions are thoroughly covered in this enthralling book. But, then again, so is every other aspect of a place that continues to haunt the human imagination ... Perhaps best of all, Walker gives us a fantastically vivid sense of what it's like to be in Antarctica. Reader's Digest

Über den Autor und weitere Mitwirkende

Gabrielle Walker has a PhD in natural sciences from Cambridge University and has taught at both Cambridge and Princeton universities. She is Chief Scientist of strategic advisory firm Xynteo, a consultant to New Scientist, contributes frequently to BBC radio and writes for many newspapers and magazines. In 2009 and 2011 respectively she presented the Planet Earth Under Threat series and Thin Air for BBC Radio 4, and in 2011 she presented The Secret Life of Ice for BBC4. She lives in London.

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Von Kristina am 2. August 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verifizierter Kauf
Having read this book in preparation of my own trip down South, it has been worth every minute I spent reading it. Walker manages, almost effortlessly, to connect geology, biology, astronomy, history, climatology and sociology without ever getting dull. An extensive list of references and recommendations for further reading show options for those who want to go beyond the introduction.
I'd have wished for a few more maps in the book, but on the whole it didn't feel absolutely necessary to have them. I can recommend this book to anyone who is interested in a thorough intro into the topic of Antarctica.
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Die hilfreichsten Kundenrezensionen auf (beta) 9 Rezensionen
3 von 3 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
An intimate and revealing look at the coldest, driest, windiest, and most isolated continent on Earth. 30. Januar 2013
Von Paul Tognetti - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Taschenbuch
It is not very often that a photograph on a dust jacket entices me to read a book. In fact I can only recall a handful of times in my life that this has happened. The other day I was perusing the "recent arrivals" at my local public library when I spotted a stunning photograph of a desolate yet indescribably beautiful place. The landscape was like nothing I had ever seen before in my life. When I discovered the subject matter I simply could not resist. Gabrielle Walker writes about science for a living and has visited Antarctica on a number of occasions. Ms. Walker has chronicled her first-hand experiences and observations in an eye-opening new book "Antarctica: An Intimate Portrait of a Mysterious Continent". I suspect that this is one of the most comprehensive looks at a place that very few of us have ever thought very much about. I must confess that I had a very hard time putting this one down.

Throughout the pages of "Antarctica: An Intimate Portrait of a Mysterious Continent" Gabrielle Walker offers up something akin to a guided tour of this vast and truly amazing place. For someone who writes about science for a living the author demonstrates a terrific command of the language as she describes in great detail the myriad people, places and events that she encounters in her extensive travels. Truth be told, there are probably very few people on earth who have had the opportunity to visit as many parts of Antarctica as Ms. Walker has. One of the things that immediately jumped out at me were the bizarre names of some of the places on the map including Desolation Island, Cape Disappointment, Terror Point, Exasperation Inlet and Deception Island. Obviously, Antarctica is a place fraught with danger at just about every turn and is not a place for the faint of heart. The author quotes a young British explorer named Belgrave Ninnis who observed a century ago; " It really looks as if there must have been a large surplus of bad weather left over after all the land had been formed at the Creation, a surplus that appears to have been dumped down in this small area of Antarctica." While the author is obviously captivated by her surroundings her main purpose in being here is to observe the science. It seems that there are all manner of cutting-edge scientific experiments going on here.

Although I am hardly the scientific sort, I was very interested in learning about the wide variety of scientific experimentation being done on Antarctica these days. Gabrielle Walker takes her readers to the South Pole where there is a lot more going on than you might expect. She visits the Atmospheric Research Observatory (ARO), a facility run by the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) whose purpose is to measure long-term changes in the air. Did you know that scientists have been measuring the air at the South Pole since 1957? Meanwhile, important work is also being done at SPRESSO (South Pole Remote Earth Science and Seismological Observatory) which has the ability to measure earthquakes all over the world. The author spent about four weeks at the South Pole where the temperature hovered at around -58F! Ms. Walker also takes us to a place called Concordia where scientists drill down into the ice caps and extract cores containing air that is older than the human race. Imagine that! Many of these ice cores are retrieved from a depth of some 10000 feet and are estimated to be 800,000 years old. Towards the end of the book the author takes us to the Antarctic Peninsula which is located on the northernmost part of the continent. Most people consider this to be the most beautiful place in Antarctica. Unlike most other areas of the continent this is a place with an abundance of life. You will learn why scientists living and working on the Antarctic Peninsula are extremely concerned about the rising temperatures there and the implications it is going to have on both the landscape and the creatures who call this place home. Finally, I would be remiss if I failed to mention some of the fascinating wildlife that Gabrielle encountered along the way. She describes several varieties of penguins including the cute little Adelies and the much larger emperors. As for birds she was fortunate enough to see skuas which evidently look like seagulls but are larger and brown. They earn their living by stealing penguin eggs for food. Then there are the snow petrels that are pure white and live in this harsh environment for 40 years or more. I was curious so I looked them up on Wikipedia. They are breathtakingly beautiful! Finally, the author talks of sea spiders the size of dinner plates, giant worms twice as long as the average human being is tall and fish that literally have antifreeze circulating in their bodies. Unbelievable!

One of the main reasons I decided to read "Antarctica: An Intimate Portrait of a Mysterious Continent" was that this was a subject that I knew very little about. Gabrielle Walker taught me an awful lot and I appreciate that. I applaud the author for going to the extremes she did to gleen this information for us. At the end of the book there is a timeline of Antarctic history and a glossary of terms that also proved to be very helpful. I only wish that this book included some photographs. Nevertheless, I am pleased to report that this is a well-written, informative and very entertaining book. Highly recommended!
3 von 3 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Amazing Antarctica 3. Juli 2012
Von Larry R Ritter - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Kindle Edition Verifizierter Kauf
This book provides a great overview of life on this lonely cold place called Antarctica. One cannot help but be amazed at the existence of any life where it is constantly near or below freezing,windy and in darkness for half the year. The book gives an insight into the activies of the various animals that live there and their adaptation to that environment. We also learn about earlier discoveries at the turn of the century when man first made his mark here, albeit in a very small way. I recommend this book to anyone that is looking for an overview of life on Antarctica.
2 von 2 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Intimate and Beautiful 15. September 2012
Von Imaginelle - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Kindle Edition Verifizierter Kauf
I have read just about every book on this continent you can find- even the first hand accounts of Mawson and Scott- but this is a modern, beautifully descriptive story of one of the last wild places on earth. Read it and know why its important that we hold ourselves environmentally accountable elsewhere.
THE ICE 7. August 2013
Von Kathleen Bohlmann - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe Verifizierter Kauf
My son went to Antarctica twice. We have a huge map of Antarctica on the wall above the computer. Gabriell Walker's stories enchanted me.

Reading this book made me feel as if I had relived my son's trips with him. I read and saw the places he talked about. The stories of GW's visits to the camps of other countries were extremely informative and colorful. The part I think I liked most was how she described the human intelligent and dedicated (and quirky) the personnel was. The history of the continent and the descriptions of the experiments, plus the value of the information gained by the scientist and engineers convince me that this research is most valuable and must continue.

If you want to just read about Antarctica, I'm sure you will enjoy this book. If you want to learn about the science and research there, you will find it in this book.

I actually read this book from our public library. Whenever my son called I would tell him the latest I had learned. I said it was a must have for his library. So I purchased this copy from Amazon for him. The American publication lacks the photo inserts of the British publication that I purchased used ("for character.")The wear was negligible...just a small dent on the bottom of the back cover. Buy the British version if you want the photos.

By reading this story of Antarctica you will experience a world apart. This is definitely a book to share.

I love this book!
A fascinatingly intimate account of Antarctica 17. Juni 2014
Von Bodicia - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Kindle Edition
Gabrielle Walker writes a fascinating account of life in Antarctica. Visiting several different bases in Antarctica which are owned by various nations she talks to the scientists, technicians and engineers who have made Antarctica their home either in the summer period or, the braver ones, throughout the winter period. Written in a way that even those with no scientific background will find easy to understand Walker's narrative is engaging, entertaining and really makes you think about what life is like for humans on one of the last truly unexplored continents of our generation.

Antarctica is the ideal place for cosmologists to look through powerful telescopes into the sky and discover the universe's distant past. It is also an ideal place for scientists to find out what the air was like in Earth's distant past because there are ancient air bubbles trapped in the ice which are brought up in core samples and then measured and dated, some samples going back hundreds of thousands of years. There is also much work to be done on the glaciers and the ice shelves; if it all melted tomorrow the world's sea level would increase around 3 to 4 feet which would make living in some low-lying areas impossible. The concerning thing is, for various reasons, some parts are melting into the sea at a much quicker rate and over a much shorter time than is ideal.

There is far more to this book than scientific facts. Gabrielle Walker gets insights, anecdotes and humorous stories from those people who choose to spend months in darkness and isolation and she recounts the stories of tragedy, triumphs and companionship from those visiting an icy world, which despite its beauty, really does need to be respected.

There is mention of the wildlife on Antarctica too; penguins, seals, whales et al. But the real action is at the level of the krill and other organisms which might not be as pretty but are the essential parts of Antarctica's ecosystem.
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