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Skating to Antarctica Paperback – January 20, 2005
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Observer 'Skating to Antarctica is a fascinating, moving account of two voyages . Diski's book shines out for its wit, lack of self-pity and strong interest in survival. I relished her sketches of ship routine, solemn penguins and bored soldiers . Diski has a grea Helen Dunmore, Express 'A non-fiction masterpiece.' She 'This extraordinary account of a journey to the most barren outer reaches of the planet becomes a beautiful, complex symbol: it's a voyage of self-discovery to the white emptiness that is painted as truth, despair, calm and madness - all at once.'
About the Author
Jenny Diski is the author of eight novels and two memoirs: SKATING TO ANTARCTICA and STRANGER ON A TRAIN. She lives in Cambridge.
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Top Customer Reviews
I am a fan of Jenny Diski's nonfiction, and was sorry to learn of her death in April.
In Diski's journey inside herself, and her physical journey, there is much to admire. I found myself gasping a couple of times at her reactions and descriptions about herself. Whilst I can share her love of indolence, and can happily spend a week's holiday in bed reading (!) I just cannot imagine the 30 years of lack of curiosity about her mother's whereabouts! What a very (to me) peculiar family! But then, Diski has brought it so evocatively to the page.
The scenes where she is finding out about her childhood from the three elderly women ('and the one remaining husband') who lived in her block of flats are fabulous - very witty. It takes a deft touch to write with such humour about events which were pretty monumental!
The physical journey - the travelogue - is beautifully written too, and is one of the more interesting travel stories I have read. In the observations about her companions it reminds me of Paul Theroux at his best.
It is 2016 now, and I am re-reding this. I adjusted the star rating from 4 to 5, as my admiration for it just grows. Jenny Diski wrote two of my favourite travel books ever - this, and Strangers On A Train. It is superb.