10 books like Uttermost Part of the Earth

By E. Lucas Bridges,

Here are 10 books that authors have personally recommended if you like Uttermost Part of the Earth. Shepherd is a community of 7,000+ authors sharing their favorite books with the world.

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The Voyage of the Beagle

By Charles Darwin,

Book cover of The Voyage of the Beagle

The circumnavigation of the world by HMS Beagle (1831-36), with the young Darwin travelling as a companion to Captain Robert Fitzroy, was more consequential in the advancement of human knowledge than any of the voyages of Columbus, Magellan, or Cook. We sailed south into the Roaring Forties with Darwin’s highly readable narrative always at hand; more than half of it is set in Patagonia. It was thrilling to contemplate at Puerto Deseado the unchanged landscape that had brought to Darwin’s mind two lines from Shelley: “The wilderness has a mysterious tongue/Which teaches awful doubt.” And, as we left harbour, to skirt around an underwater rock that the usually vigilant Fitzroy failed to spot in time; it was marked on our chart as “Roca Beagle.” 

The Voyage of the Beagle

By Charles Darwin,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked The Voyage of the Beagle as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

With an Introduction by David Amigoni.

Charles Darwin's travels around the world as an independent naturalist on HMS Beagle between 1831 and 1836 impressed upon him a sense of the natural world's beauty and sublimity which language could barely capture. Words, he said, were inadequate to convey to those who have not visited the inter-tropical regions, the sensation of delight which the mind experiences'.

Yet in a travel journal which takes the reader from the coasts and interiors of South America to South Sea Islands, Darwin's descriptive powers are constantly challenged, but never once overcome. In addition, The Voyage of…


Mischief in Patagonia

By H. W. Tilman,

Book cover of Mischief in Patagonia

Bill Tilman was a war hero and an accomplished Himalayan climber – reaching 27,000 feet on Everest without oxygen in 1938 – who turned in later life to sailing as a means of accessing obscure mountain ranges. In 1956 he sailed his Bristol Channel pilot cutter (Mischief) from England to the Chilean channels and made the first successful crossing of the Patagonian ice cap. Tilman was likely not easy to get on with – he tolerates no women on board, and on this particular cruise we never learn the first name of his deputy – but his writing is erudite and amusingly self-deprecating. This narrative concludes with the dry comment: “Ships are all right – it's the men in them.” Tilman sailed to the very end. He disappeared at sea in 1977, in his eightieth year, en route to climb a remote island peak in Antarctica. Would that…

Mischief in Patagonia

By H. W. Tilman,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Mischief in Patagonia as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

'So I began thinking again of those two white blanks on the map, of penguins and humming birds, of the pampas and of gauchos, in short, of Patagonia, a place where, one was told, the natives’ heads steam when they eat marmalade.'

So responded H. W. ‘Bill’ Tilman to his own realisation that the Himalaya were too high for a mountaineer now well into his fifties. He would trade extremes of altitude for the romance of the sea with, at his journey’s end, mountains and glaciers at a smaller scale; and the less explored they were, the better he would…


The Totorore Voyage

By Gerry Clark,

Book cover of The Totorore Voyage

In 1986, New Zealander Gerry Clark set off on what would turn out to be a three-year circumnavigation of Antarctica aboard his home-built plywood yacht TotororeThe ostensible objective was a study of seabirds – notably albatrosses – but this is no ornithological treatise. In the Chilean channels and the intricate waterways around Tierra del Fuego, Totorore and her crew lurch from one near disaster to another, each recounted Tilman-like in an understated style. Later, he is dismasted twice and the voyage becomes a desperate struggle for survival. We were lucky enough to meet Gerry – and have him sign a copy of this book – in 1990; it’s rightly described as “one of the most remarkable small boat adventures of all time.” Tototore and crew disappeared one night in 1999, en route to retrieve satellite transmitters from albatrosses on Antipodes Island, off New Zealand. 

The Totorore Voyage

By Gerry Clark,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Totorore Voyage as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

`I love the sea, I love the birds, I love adventure. In what better way could I indulge myself, in these later years of my life, than to undertake an expedition in the great Southern Ocean? In 1983 at the age of 56, Gerry Clark set out from New Zealand in his 10 metre home built wooden yacht to circumnavigate Antarctica in a quest for new information about seabirds. In this graphic account of the ensuing 3 year 8 month voyage, he describes his adventures in some of the remotest, wildest and most spectacularly beautiful parts of the world.

`Below…


Two Against Cape Horn

By Hal Roth,

Book cover of Two Against Cape Horn

In the 1960s and 70s, Americans Hal and Margaret Roth popularized long-distance ocean cruising in the USA much as Eric and Susan Hiscock did in the UK. In a series of accessible and well-illustrated books Hal narrated their adventures sailing all over the world, aboard a 35-ft sloop called Whisper. The climactic moment of his story of their 1978 voyage from California through the Chilean channels is starkly summed up at the end of Chapter Eight: “We were shipwrecked on uninhabited islands only a few miles from Cape Horn.” Whisper’s crew live on a beach for nine days, are rescued by the Chilean navy then come back to re-float her. Our copy of this book still has stains, from four years on board Bosun Bird in those same waters. Every time I look at the double-page spread of Whisper on the rocks I shiver and think: “There but…

Two Against Cape Horn

By Hal Roth,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Two Against Cape Horn as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Tells of two veteran sailors who set out to sail to a little-known archipelago and then around Cape Horn and succeeded only after their boat was wrecked on their first attempt


In Patagonia

By Bruce Chatwin,

Book cover of In Patagonia

Chatwin is a storyteller and adventurer. He makes his way into Argentina, across the Pampas, and into the mountains at the tip of South America where he finds in a cave remnants of a giant ground sloth that had lived there thousands of years before. His writing takes you on the journey: listening to a pianist on a passenger ship playing on an out-of-tune piano, drinking with local shepherds, telling tales of old conflicts and revolutions. Like all good travel writers, he is precise: “I passed through a desert of black stones and came to Sarmiento. It was another dusty grid of metal buildings, lying on a strip of arable land between the fizzling turquoise Lake Musters and the slime-green Lake Colhue-Huapi.”

In Patagonia

By Bruce Chatwin,

Why should I read it?

4 authors picked In Patagonia as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

'The book that redefined travel writing' Guardian

Bruce Chatwin sets off on a journey through South America in this wistful classic travel book

With its unique, roving structure and beautiful descriptions, In Patagonia offers an original take on the age-old adventure tale. Bruce Chatwin's journey to a remote country in search of a strange beast brings along with it a cast of fascinating characters. Their stories delay him on the road, but will have you tearing through to the book's end.

'It is hard to pin down what makes In Patagonia so unique, but, in the end, it is Chatwin's…


Enduring Patagonia

By Gregory Crouch,

Book cover of Enduring Patagonia

I love how this book captures the spirit and obsession of climbing in Patagonia; the characters, the landscape, the majesty of the peaks, and our struggles to climb them. Crouch took me there years before I ever went. His devotion to climbing and his depth of experiences, from the harrowing to the mundane (in the endless boredom of waiting for good weather he declares himself “the Muhammad Ali of killing time”) shine in his writing. The book speaks to the obsessed, by the obsessed. It’s a cult classic among Patagonia alpine climbers for good reason.

Enduring Patagonia

By Gregory Crouch,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Enduring Patagonia as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Patagonia is a strange and terrifying place, a vast tract of land shared by Argentina and Chile where the violent weather spawned over the southern Pacific charges through the Andes with gale-force winds, roaring clouds, and stinging snow. Squarely athwart the latitudes known to sailors as the roaring forties and furious fifties, Patagonia is a land trapped between angry torrents of sea and sky, a place that has fascinated explorers and writers for centuries. Magellan discovered the strait that bears his name during the first circumnavigation. Charles Darwin traveled Patagonia's windy steppes and explored the fjords of Tierra del Fuego…


Darwin and the Beagle

By Alan Moorehead,

Book cover of Darwin and the Beagle

A superbly written account of, perhaps, the most famous British naturalist-explorer, Charles Darwin, on his great voyage aboard HMS Beagle to Patagonia and the Galápagos in 1831-6. The author also covers the furious aftermath, the debate resulting from Darwin’s (and Wallace’s) findings and contentious, to some seemingly blasphemous, theory on the origin of species. Profusely illustrated in colour with contemporary material. I have read and long admired several of Moorhead’s books and particularly enjoyed this one as it deals with a personal hero of mine.

Darwin and the Beagle

By Alan Moorehead,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Darwin and the Beagle as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

An account of Darwin's five-year expedition, as a naturalist on board HMS Beagle, illustrated from contemporary sources.


The Songlines

By Bruce Chatwin,

Book cover of The Songlines

Chatwin left his cushy job at Sotheby’s in London to do something far more interesting and important than evaluating and selling rare and precious objects to wealthy collectors. He set out to explore and celebrate the uniqueness of other cultures, in this case, those mysterious dream-tracks which Australia’s Aboriginal peoples memorized, musical maps of their territory, which they sang or recited as they crossed the land from one tract to another. He has a great ear for listening to stories or conversations and, of course, an even better eye for noticing and recording the specifics of landscapes and human behaviour. In addition to inventing a friend, Arkady, as a sort of alter-ego, Chatwin, a witty, self-taught social anthropologist, reminds us of the need to clean our glasses regularly and fine-tune our antennae.

The Songlines

By Bruce Chatwin,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked The Songlines as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

This Moleskine-bound edition is sold together with a blank Moleskine notebook, for recording your own thoughts and adventures. Perfect for the travel writers of the future.

The Songlines is Bruce Chatwin's magical account of his journey across the length and breadth of Australia, following the invisible and ancient pathways that are said to criss-cross the land. Chatwin recorded his travels in his favourite notebook, which he would usually buy in bulk in a particular stationery shop in Paris. But when the manufacturer went out of business, he was told "Le vrai moleskine n'est plus". A decade after its publication, on…


The Tunnel

By Ernesto Sabato, Margaret Sayers Peden (translator),

Book cover of The Tunnel

The painter Castel meets Maria, the only person in the world capable of understanding him and his art. They start a relationship, but he becomes obsessive and wants her to live for him only. Castel describes his mind as a dark labyrinth in which occasional flashes of lightning illuminate dark corridors. The increasingly paranoid painter murders Maria and the novel takes the form of his prison-cell confession. Unable to understand why he committed the crime; he is at a loss how to justify himself. Sabato’s tortured protagonist is up there with Camus’ Meursault and Dostoevsky’s Underground Man. Femicide is a huge problem in Latin America, and Sabato was praised for being able to recreate the mind of a monster. However, I found Castel somewhat sympathetic.

The Tunnel

By Ernesto Sabato, Margaret Sayers Peden (translator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Tunnel as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

One of the great short novels of the twentieth century—in an edition marking the 100th anniversary of the author's birth.

An unforgettable psychological novel of obsessive love, The Tunnel was championed by Albert Camus, Thomas Mann, and Graham Greene upon its publication in 1948 and went on to become an international bestseller. At its center is an artist named Juan Pablo Castel, who recounts from his prison cell his murder of a woman named María Iribarne. Obsessed from the moment he sees her examining one of his paintings, Castel fantasizes for months about how they might meet again. When he…


Hopscotch

By Julio Cortazar, Gregory Rabassa (translator),

Book cover of Hopscotch

Argentinians in 1950s Paris argue about art and philosophy. They fall in and out of love to a jazz soundtrack. The novel itself is in love with the modern city and the secret patterns of chance. Prefacing it is a ‘table of instructions’ in which the author writes that "this book consists of many books, but two books above all. The first can be read in a normal fashion and it ends with Chapter 56... The second should be read by beginning with Chapter 73 and then following the sequence indicated at the end of each chapter."

There’s an exhilaration of structure, a deadpan formal playfulness that still thrills. It’s the book that taught me the most about reading. And, not entirely coincidentally, it’s the book that made me realise I was going to become a writer.

Hopscotch

By Julio Cortazar, Gregory Rabassa (translator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Hopscotch as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

"Cortazar's masterpiece ... The first great novel of Spanish America" (The Times Literary Supplement) • Winner of the National Book Award for Translation in 1967, translated by Gregory Rabassa

Horacio Oliveira is an Argentinian writer who lives in Paris with his mistress, La Maga, surrounded by a loose-knit circle of bohemian friends who call themselves "the Club." A child's death and La Maga's disappearance put an end to his life of empty pleasures and intellectual acrobatics, and prompt Oliveira to return to Buenos Aires, where he works by turns as a salesman, a keeper of a circus cat which can…


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