lost low res cover

Tod Olson continues his well-researched ‘Lost’ series with Lost in the Antarctic. Previous exciting reads include Lost in the Pacific, 1942; Lost in Outer Space; and Lost in the Amazon.

This current effort is a riveting account of Ernest Shackleton’s attempt to cross the Antarctic continent. He led 28 men on an ship called Endurance, hoping it could break through the icy waters. What results is a life threatening ordeal for each and every man aboard. The story comes together thanks in part to journals many of them kept to record their thoughts.

Beginning with THE LAST GREAT JOURNEY and ending with  LAST STAND, fourteen chapters take readers through the drama of trying to stay alive. Food is dwindling and living conditions are at their worst. Who could survive such horrid conditions? You’ll be pulling for them to make it home safely, but also question the thinking behind trying such a difficult expedition in the first place. They did it because they were explorers, wanting nothing more than to do something no one else had done.

Black and white pictures support the text and show aspects of the journey that will have you shaking your head. The outcome for Lost in the Antarctic is a thrilling ride and a great way to learn about an event through the eyes of those who experienced it.


There wasn’t a thing Ernest Shackleton could do. He stood on the ice-bound Weddell Sea, watching the giant blocks of frozen saltwater squeeze his ship to death. The ship’s name seemed ironic now: the Endurance. But she had lasted nine months in this condition, stuck on the ice in the frigid Antarctic winter. So had Shackleton and his crew of 28 men, trying to become the first expedition ever to cross the entire continent.

Now, in October 1915, as he watched his ship break into pieces, Shackleton gave up on that goal. He ordered his men to abandon ship. From here on, their new goal would be to focus on only one thing: survival.

Filled with incredible photographs that survived the doomed voyage of the Endurance, Lost in the Antarctic retells one of the greatest adventure and exploration stories of all time.


tod olson photoTod Olson is the author of the historical fiction series How to Get Rich and the four books in the Lost series–Lost in the Pacific, 1942; Lost in Outer Space;  Lost in the Amazon; and Lost in the Antarctic. He has written for national magazines on the Columbine school shooting, homeless teens, the murder of Matthew Shepard, and many other stories of interest to children and young adults. Tod holds an MFA from Vermont College of Fine Arts and lives in Vermont with his family, his mountain bike, and his electric reclining chair. To learn more, and to download free teaching resources, visit his website: todolson.com.


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About Greg Pattridge

Climbing another mountain...always striving to reach the next peak in my life and career.
This entry was posted in Middle Grade Book Reviews, non fiction and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.


  1. Great review ! This was one exciting adventure I only learned about recently. I just finished reading/reviewing another version of this story from the POV of the sled dogs — an easier read for younger kids. It is packed with history, but also with creative fiction. Was going to run on Monday, but may hold.

  2. This should be a hot ticket with middle-graders. It is such a compelling story. I will put this on my TBR list. Thanks for the review.

  3. Sue Heavenrich says:

    I loved his Lost in Outer Space – and have a copy of this book to review… so you’ll be seeing my take on it soon.

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