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The Ice at the End of the World by Jon Gertner

Jon Gertner is a self-described ‘journalist and historian’, endlessly fascinated by the intersectionality of science, tech and nature. Gertner is a published author, and his journalistic contributions are widely lauded and respected. His latest book, The Ice at the End of the World, is a fantastic mix of history, scientific progression and the spirit of human adventure.

The vast white desert of Greenland’s ice started developing around 1 million years ago. Over 1,500 miles long and 700 miles wide, it is several MILES deep in some places, Gertner and his fellows would come to visualize it as a huge piece of handmade paper while flying over the vast expanse, full of creases and inconsistencies, and indescribably beautiful with its slight imperfections.

Over time, exploratory obsession with the alien, inhospitable landscape gave way to scientific-oriented expeditions. The discoveries made during these journeys gave credence to the idea that Greenland’s ice was intrinsically tied to the health of the global climate. As technology developed over time, the further scientists were able to construct a better understanding of the depths to which this was actually true.

Continuing the work of scientists like Alfred Wegener (who first theorized that Greenland acted as nature’s coolant for the whole world) and Henri Bader (whose discovery of tiny frozen bubbles hidden thousands of feet down in the ice), Gertner carries the torch with his belief of the importance of studying Greenland’s ice. As Gertner posits, there is an infinite amount of past and future knowledge frozen within, and it is crucial to learn what we can.

Simply put, To study Greenland is to study climate change.

The Ice at the End of the World chronicles in detail the human fascination with Greenland, from the first adventurers in the late 1800’s to the modern-day scientific journey the author took part in. Gertner’s writing is detailed and engrossing; his love for science and exploration mixed with the brutality and hardness of Greenland’s landscape make for a seriously epic read.

Review by Joel

$18.99 Trade Paperback

The Ice at the End of the World is in stock at the bookstore, you can order it online or call us at (505) 988-4226.

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