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Inconstant and forbidding, the arctic has lured misguided voyagers into the cold for centuries--pushing them beyond the limits of their knowledge, technology, and endurance. A Fabulous Kingdom charts these quests and the eventual race for the North Pole, chronicling the lives and adventures that would eventually throw light on this "magical realm" of sunless winters. They follow the explorers from the early journeys of Viking Ottar to the daring exploits of Martin Frobisher, Henry Hudson, Frederick Cook, Robert Peary, and Richard Bird. The second edition features a section entitled "The New Arctic" that illuminates current scientific and environmental issues that threaten the region. Officer and Page discuss such topics as the science behind the melting of the polar ice; the endangered species that now depend on the ice, including polar bears, narwhals, walruses, and ringed seals; commerce in mining and natural resources, especially petroleum and natural gas; and predictions for the economic and environmental future of the region. Library Journal called the first edition a "winning fusion of adventure, suspense, and history."

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