Friday, September 14, 2012

The White Darkness by Geraldine McCaughrean

Title: The White Darkness

Author: Geraldine McCaughrean

Published: January 1st, 2007 by HarperCollins 
Genre: Realistic YA, Survival
Reviewer: Hannah


"I have been in love with Titus Oates for quite a while now--which is ridiculous, since he's been dead for ninety years. But look at it this way. In ninety years I'll be dead too, and the age difference won't matter." 

Sym is not your average teenage girl. She is obsessed with the Antarctic, and the brave, romantic figure of Captain Oates from Scott's doomed expedition to the South Pole. In fact, Oates is the secret confidant to whom she spills all her hopes and fears.

But Sym's uncle Victor is even more obsessed--and when he takes her on a dream trip into the bleak Antarctic wilderness, it turns into a nightmarish struggle for survival that will challenge everything she knows and loves.


I loved The White Darkness. It was FANTASTIC. It has got to be one of my top favorite books of all time. Which is saying something, because I had strong feelings of loathe and disgust and other nasty words towards it the first time I read it.

But, for some unknown, unjustified, very murky reason, I decided to read it again. 

Mind = BLOWN.

Some all-powerful and omniscient force must have bashed me on the head with a blunt object (perhaps a book?) and made me read The White Darkness again. Why would I, of my own free will and choosing, decide to reread a book that I utterly despised? God only knows, but I’m glad I did. I cannot for the life of me figure out why I ever hated this literary masterpiece. I was not bored for a single moment. Don’t tell anyone who knows me personally, but I was giggling with anticipation while rereading this. And I don’t giggle. Ever.

The main character, Sym, is…well, I don’t know quite how to put this. She’s simultaneously clever and na├»ve. Her naivety is her character flaw; everyone has to have at least one, and that’s hers. Now, about being clever—she has a way of phrasing sentences that just stun me, because they are brilliant, creative...the literary equivalent of a delectable chocolatey snack.

A few examples, no?

“Maxine is just so full of sewage, she only has to move sharply to slop over at the mouth.”

“There are things roaming around inside my head as clever as Theseus in the Labyrinth. It's just that nobody ever gave them the necessary piece of string, so they'll never find their way out.”

I won't post too many excerpts, I wouldn't want to spoil anything. Suffice to say, it was a brilliant book, well-written, incredible story, awe-inspiring imagery, and I recommend it to all of the people, hyper intelligent animals, and extraterrestrial life forms who are currently reading this post. 

I've rated The White Darkness:

 (5/5)      -Hannah


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