To Purchase Ice Country
Ice Country is the story of Rusty, a 15-year-old
boy who joins the crew of an Arctic expedition in the summer of 1950.
The crew faces many perils, including violent storms,
damaging icebergs and polar bears. While struggling to test new skills
against a hostile environment, Rusty struggles inwardly to gain acceptance
and self esteem.
Donald MacMillan was a real Arctic explorer. His work with
the natives of Canada and Northwest Greenland spanned 50 years. Between
1921 and 1954, he led 18 Arctic expeditions in his custom-built schooner
This historical novel is based on actual expeditions.
Readers learn about the eastern Arctic and its natives, and about
Explorer MacMillan and those who sailed with him.
• from a student, age 10, Westbrook, ME:
"I loved your book. I thought it was very adventurous
and exciting to read. I find it very similar to the survival stories
that Gary Paulsen writes."
• from a former Bowdoin crew member:
"What a great tale! On more than one occasion as
I read along tears came to my eyes… The Umiamako glacier story was written
as if you had gone up the cliff with us."
• from another former Bowdoin crew member:
"You did an amazing job in depicting life aboard the Bowdoin
with Capt. Mac, identifying the places and the hazards along the Labrador
coast, and at the same time developing a fictional story that should fascinate
many a young reader."
from Chapter 7, "The Iceberg"
Barreling southward was an island of ice larger
than any Rusty had ever imagined. It was plowing everything aside and to
the north. The berg, the ship, all the nearby ice chunks—everything in
its path was being forced aside.
from Chapter 10 , "Walrus"
Just as Rusty was about to jump onto the small iceberg
to unhook the ice anchor, Captain Mac yelled down at him. "NO, RUSTY, NO!"
The million-ton iceberg rumbled like thunder as it approached…
"Tah-koo! Look!" said Etukasuk. "Ah'wik!
Etukasuk stopped paddling. …
Rusty kept going. Nothing tough about these guys, he thought.
They looked heavy and sluggish. All of a sudden, his paddle hit something.
Out of the water shot a huge walrus, looking angry… Rusty tightened his
grip on the paddle and smacked the leathery animal on the head. It began
to snort and bellow.
"Help!" Rusty yelled…
Before Rusty knew what had happened, the water was alive
with walrus. The whole herd was upon him, roaring in anger, churning the
water into a frenzy. Suddenly the kayak started to topple over.