Dan Simmons has written some very long and excellent novels but this may be the first in which every sentence is needed to tell this fictional account of Sir John Franklin's ill fated voyage to find the Northwest Passage. While the author included a supernatural element to the tale it does not extracted from the chilling account (no pun intended) of survival, or more precisely the lack of, in the cold Arctic of the 1840s. In fact the supernatural elements successfully resolve the story in ways that I cannot say as it would spoil the book for those lucky enough to read it. Let's just say that while this Moby Dick sized book may not have a great white whale it does have a great white something. But it is really the highly detailed and researched look at the unique personalities of 19th centuries explorers and their hardships that drive the novel. This book deserves five stars and one Aurora Borealis.