Author: Marco Tedesco with Alberto Flores D'Arcais; forward by Elizabeth Kolbert
Source/Format: Netgalley (publisher); eARC
More Details: Nonfiction; Science
Publisher/Publication Date: The Experiment; August 18, 2020
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Synopsis from Goodreads...
One of the least known and least inhabited parts of the world, Greenland is a singular place on Earth from which to look for the future of our planet and question its history. Glaciologist Marco Tedesco, a world-leading expert on ice and on climate change, takes us along as he and his fellow researchers conduct all-important measurements to understand the dramatic changes afoot on the immense polar ice cap. Following the arc of a typical day as a working scientist, Tedesco tells us about improbable “polar camels,” cryoconite holes (the only place where life grows in the icy expanse), and gigantic meteorite debris. We also learn of the epic deeds of the great Arctic explorers (both men and, perhaps surprisingly, women) and about legends of the rare local populations. A Day at the Top of the World offers a vantage point on the future from a place in which temperatures are rising at double the average rate of the rest of the planet.
There are so many different parts of The Hidden Life of Ice that interested me. As a whole, I liked it. What I greatly enjoyed was the parts of the book when Tedesco dug his heels into the topic and really got into the science about ice. His enthusiasm about this subject was easy to read. It was present on the page, especially in the way he talked about his and others work in the field. There were also photos in the book, and it was pretty cool getting a look at some of the locations described by Tedesco.
Among my favorite chapters in the book, was the one on the color of ice. I already knew about the general concept of white surfaces being more reflective, due to personal experience with walking on a ground paved with white stones—it was extremely bright in comparison to, say, grass or concrete sidewalks. I can imagine what it was like to be surrounded by ice and snow. So it was interesting to learn about the way they studied the light (“spectral fingerprint”). I also enjoyed the chapters about the microscopic organisms, the polar camels, ice abyss, and the one about the lakes as well.
Given how timely the topic of climate change is, this book was well worth the read. It offered a direct look at the changes happening to ice, and what could result from it. While also taking a look at how these environments are studied. Overall, The Hidden Life of Ice was a fantastic read.
About the author...
About the author...
About the author....
Elizabeth Kolbert has been a staff writer at The New Yorker since 1999. Her journalism has garnered multiple awards, including a 2006 National Academies Communication Award for her three-part series "The Climate of Man," which investigated the consequences of disappearing ice on the planet. She is author of The Prophet of Love, Field Notes from a Catastrophe, and The Sixth Extinction, for which she won the Pulitzer Prize for general nonfiction in 2015. She received the Blake-Dodd Prize, from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, in 2017.