In May 1845, the explorer Sir John Franklin, 129 men and two ships, HMS Erebus and HMS Terror, left the coast of Kent bound for the Canadian Arctic. Their mission? To find the North-West Passage route through the Arctic Ocean. They never returned.
Simmons’s mythic retelling begins in October 1847; Franklin is dead, the ships are facing their third brutal winter trapped in the ice, and food and coal are low. The immediate danger, however, comes not from cold, starvation or disease. Something on the ice, monstrous and unseen, is hunting the remaining men.
Meticulously researched, daring in its mix of factual and imagined, and utterly ruthless in its depiction of the grisly fates that the men face, this is the “what-if” novel at its most ambitious and chilling.