To the White Sea by James Dickey
By the author of the bestselling Deliverance, this spellbinding novel of survival confirmed the late James Dickey as the successor to Ernest Hemingway John Updike described legendary Southern poet and novelist James Dickey as 'the high-flyer of American poets'. This was literally true: he flew over 100 missions in WWII, developing his reputation as a tough-guy, and his dark poetic insights into the human instinct to survive. Of his three novels, To the White Sea is the truest to his experience. An American airforce gunner is blasted from the sky over Tokyo in the 1945 firestorms which seem end civilization. And he is glad of it. Left with only his army survival kit, his own knife and his upbringing as a hunter in the lower Arctic, the airman makes his way through the burning city under cover of chaos, and across the alien country to the northern snows, where he can live alone, on his instincts. This is a haunting and starkly beautiful book of fire and ice, blood and snow, stripping back layers of humanity to reveal man as both hunter and hunted, an unequivocal part of nature.