Mitchell Zuckoff’s new book Frozen in Time ranks among the best non-fiction works of survival and rescue during the Second World War. Furthermore, the book is testament to the strength of the human spirit.
Frozen in Time details the crash of a B-17 Flying Fortress on the Greenland ice cap, while itself on a mission to find the crew of another downed plane. A Grumman Duck amphibious rescue plane also vanishes, adding to the complexity of what becomes an epic tragedy.
Imagine, 9-men huddled in the tail section of a broken B-17 bomber, who during the first month on the ice, had no verification that anyone knew where they were! They survived 148 days of 50-degree below zero weather with 100 mile per hour winds threatening to dump their makeshift shelter into bottomless crevasse only inches away. Then came the disappointment of many failed rescue attempts and further loss of life by those who tried to save them. Zuckoff unveils a determination and fortitude of the human spirit that defies comprehension.
The dimension of this gripping survival story is enhanced with the telling of the parallel expedition that took place in 2012, to find the wreckage of the U.S. Coast Guard Grumman Duck rescue plane and to return home the remains of the heroic crew.
There are four other books of this genre and caliber that I highly recommend reading:
The Endurance, by Caroline Alexander, Shackleton’s Legendary Antarctic Expedition
The Terrible Hours, by Peter Mass, The Greatest Submarine Rescue in History
In Harm’s Way, by Doug Stanton, The Sinking of the USS INDIANAPOLIS
FLYBOYS, by James Bradley, The Tragedy of Chichi Jima
Lost in Shangri-La, by Mitchell Zuckoff, A True Story of Survival and the Most Incredible Rescue Mission of World War II.