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July 25, 2017

Review: Sun at Midnight by Rosie Thomas

Review by Susan Roberts

This is the first book I've ever read about Antarctica and the setting was absolutely beautiful.  The author gives wonderful descriptions of the landscape and the ice and it almost makes the reader feel chilly even when reading on a hot day.

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Sun at Midnight
July 2017; Overlook Press; 978-1468314953
ebook, print (496 pages); romance
Not only was the setting beautiful but it was also stark and lonely. There were only 10 people at a small research station - they were strangers to each other, from different countries and were basically going into their months at the station with no information about anyone's past.  The loneliness and isolation caused them to become friends very quickly but not true friends.

The main character is Alice Peel, a geologist who went to do research because her mother (a world renowned scientist) asked her to go in her place and because she needed to get away from her home due to a painful breakup with her boyfriend. Even as a scientist who often worked alone, she was shocked at the isolation and the unpredictable weather.  As Alice learns how to survive in the cold, she also learns how to survive with the other nine people in the station - who can be trusted and who to avoid. When it looks like the weather may trap them for longer, everyone's true colors show and the reader avidly waits for their rescue.

It is very apparent the author did significant research into the setting of this book. To research the Antarctic background for Sun at Midnight, Rosie spent a month living with the scientists on a Bulgarian research station on Livingstone Island, off the Antarctic Peninsula.

This is a great book to read about love and loss and how living in such a desolate (though beautiful) place can help you learn who you really are and what is really important in your life. There is romance and conflict and secrets and the beautiful setting of Antarctica.  Fantastic book!

Buy Sun at Midnight at Amazon

About the book:

An epic love story and adventure set against the stunning backdrop of Antarctica.

Alice Peel is a geologist. She believes in observation and proof. But now she stands alone on the deck of a rickety Chilean ship as a stark landscape reveals itself. Instead of the familiar measurable world, everything that lies ahead of her is unknown and unpredictable.

Six weeks earlier her life was comfortably unfolding in an Oxford summer. Then, with her relationship suddenly in pieces, she accepted an invitation to join a group working at the end of the earth: Antarctica.

James Rooker is a man on the run. He's been running since his childhood in New Zealand. Now, there is nowhere further to go. He has taken a job working on the same small Antarctic research station.

Alice discovers an ice-blue and silver world, lit by sunlight. Nothing has prepared her for the beauty of it, or the claustrophobia of a tiny base shared with eight men and one other woman. The isolation wipes out everyone's past, and tension crackles in the air. But there is a jolt of recognition between Alice and Rooker that is like nothing she has ever known. And it is in Antarctica that she discovers something else that will change her life forever … if she survives.

About the Author:  

Janey King, née Morris was born on 1947 in Denbigh, Wales, and also grew up in North Wales. She read English at Oxford, and after a spell in journalism and publishing began writing fiction after the birth of her first child. Published since 1982 as Rosie Thomas, she has written fourteen best-selling novels, deal with the common themes of love and loss. She is one of only a few authors to have won twice the Romantic Novel of the Year Award by the Romantic Novelists' Association, in 1985 with Sunrise, and in 2007 with Iris and Ruby.

Janey is an adventurer and once she was established as a writer and her children were grown, she discovered a love of traveling and mountaineering. She has climbed in the Alps and the Himalayas, competed in the Peking to Paris car rally, spent time on a tiny Bulgarian research station in Antarctica and traveled the silk road through Asia. She currently lives in London.

Praise for Rosie Thomas

“Thomas’s novels are beautifully written.”
—Marie Claire

“Thomas writes with a sharp nib, not a dull computer key. She is neither mawkish nor squeamish, but full of fresh images.”
—Washington Post Book World

“Rosie Thomas has the rare and wonderful ability to create stories and characters that take you instantly into another world—one you are most reluctant to leave until you have reached the end.”
—Penny Vincenzi, bestselling author of No Angel

“Her characters are so interesting and realistic that readers will be reluctant to let them go.”
—Library Journal Review

“Thomas can write with ravishing sensuality.”
—The Times

Susan Roberts lives in North Carolina when she isn't traveling.  She and her husband enjoy traveling, gardening and spending time with their family and friends.  She reads almost anything (and the piles of books in her house prove that) but her favorite genres are Southern fiction, women's fiction, and thrillers. Susan is a top 1% Goodreads Reviewer. You can connect with her on Facebook.

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