Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Review - Frozen in Time by Micthell Zuckoff (4/5)

[The following review is part of the Frozen in Time blog tour being organized by TLC Book Tours.  For a full list of host blogs for the tour, see the tour page.  For more on author Mitchell Zuckoff and his work, visit his website, http://www.mitchellzuckoff.com.]
By Amanda Amaya

I am a huge fan of anything that is about World War II and survival under the most trying circumstances, so Frozen in Time was right up my alley.  Here is the synopsis:
Click Here for the Amazon listing
FROZEN IN TIME  is a gripping true story of survival, bravery, and honor in the vast Arctic wilderness during World War II, from the author of New York Times bestseller LOST IN SHANGRI-LA

On November 5, 1942, a US cargo plane slammed into the Greenland Ice Cap. Four days later, the B-17 assigned to the search-and-rescue mission became lost in a blinding storm and also crashed. Miraculously, all nine men on board survived, and the US military launched a daring rescue operation. But after picking up one man, the Grumman Duck amphibious plane flew into a severe storm and vanished.

FROZEN IN TIME
 tells the story of these crashes and the fate of the survivors, bringing vividly to life their battle to endure 148 days of the brutal Arctic winter, until an expedition headed by famed Arctic explorer Bernt Balchen brought them to safety. Mitchell Zuckoff takes the reader deep into the most hostile environment on earth, through hurricane-force winds, vicious blizzards, and subzero temperatures.

Moving forward to today, he recounts the efforts of the Coast Guard and North South Polar Inc. – led by indefatigable dreamer Lou Sapienza – who worked for years to solve the mystery of the Duck’s last flight and recover the remains of its crew.

A breathtaking blend of mystery and adventure Mitchell Zuckoff's
 FROZEN IN TIME is also a poignant reminder of the sacrifices of our military personnel and a tribute to the everyday heroism of the US Coast Guard.
This book reminded me of Laura Hillenbrand’s Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resiliance and Redemption.  Much like that book, this one captivated me as well.

I grew up in the northeast, so I know cold.  But not this type of cold:

“Cold in Greenland is almost a living thing, a tormenting force that robs strapping men of strength, denies them rest, and refuses them comfort.  In time, it kills like a python, squeezing life from its victims.”

Mitchell Zuckoff
Mitchell Zuckoff paints such a vivid picture of the landscape.  The ice, the snow, the crevasses.  The day to day torment of living on a glacier with a thin skin of aluminum to block out the wind and cold.

This book is absolutely thrilling, from the dual stories of the men marooned on this barren wasteland alternating with the push for an expedition to find artifacts, both stories are equally compelling.  I honestly feel that these types of true stories should be required reading in high schools.  The strength and fortitude exhibited by the soldiers in WWII helps to illustrate just how much has been sacrificed for the freedoms we enjoy now. 

The “greatest generation” is truly that.  I will always read books of this nature, and I look forward to Mr. Zuckoff’s sequel to this story, the one where the ending includes the team bringing the Duck home.

I give this book four stars for the way the information is presented and weaved into the story from today.  Mr. Zuckoff’s writing is impeccable and draws the reader in and keeps them interested throughout.  Although the reader knows that some of the crew survived from the very beginning, the reader just wants to know how, and what their lives were like after. 

Highly recommended for those who have an interest in history, aviation, or a tale that takes place in one of the most inhospitable locations on the planet.

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About the Reviewer:  Amanda was born in Texas, moved to Pittsburgh for 25 years, and now she’s back in the Lone Star State.  She has been a nurse for a decade.  She loves to read and will usually read anything.  She prefers to focus on self-published authors and may consider writing herself one day.  She is also a newlywed and a mom.  You can check out her work at the examiner.com and on her blog The Eclectic Bookworm.

8 comments:

  1. I also enjoyed this book very much (http://manoflabook.com/wp/?p=8749), have you read Mitchell's previous book, Lost in Shangri-La?

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  2. Frozen in Time sounds like a fascinating war story. I have heard great things about Unbroken.

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  3. I have a complete fascination with Arctic/Antarctic stories, so this one is right up my alley. I can't wait to read it myself!

    Thanks for being a part of the tour.

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