From avalanches to glaciers, from seals to snowflakes, and from Shackleton's expedition to "The Year Without Summer," Bill Streever journeys through history, myth, geography, and ecology in a year-long search for coldreal, icy, 40-below cold. In July he finds it while taking a dip in a 35-degree Arctic swimming hole; in September while excavating our planet's ancient and not so ancient ice ages; and in October while exploring hibernation habits in animals, from humans to wood frogs to bears.
A scientist whose passion for cold runs red hot, Streever is a wondrous guide: he conjures woolly mammoth carcasses and the ice-age Clovis tribe from melting glaciers, and he evokes blizzards so wild readers may freezelimb by vicarious limb.
I've probably read some of this elsewhere, but Streever explains in a way that makes things stick…He sculptures lucid explanations and fires them with fine writing…Cold is a love song to science and scientists, to Earth and everything that lives on and flies over and tunnels under it. It's impossible to read the book and not fully realize that our planet must be protected.