minimal book review/This Cold Heaven

I just finished This Cold Heaven: Seven Seasons in Greenland by Gretel Ehrlich. The author started her love affair with Greenland after being struck by lightning in 1991, while walking on her Wyoming ranch. It’s quite impossible to finish this book without dreaming of spending some time dog-sledging in the deep of winter, eating raw seal liver. The book is a mix of ethnographic writing, biography and a recount of Knud Rasmussen’s and Rockwell’s experience in Greenland. A great way to learn about Inuit legends and traditions, and the relationship to Denmark/Danish culture. Greenland is perhaps a bit too romanticized here, but Erhlich also describes some of the nation’s main current plagues: alcoholism, child abuse and incest. A great book for who likes travel writing, legends and history. And a great read in the summer heat!

I read it in  Italian. Published by Guanda, with the title Un freddo paradiso.


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