Excerpt from The Ice Child by Elizabeth McGregor, plus links to reviews, author biography & more

Summary |  Excerpt |  Reading Guide |  Reviews |  Readalikes |  Genres & Themes |  Author Bio

The Ice Child

By Elizabeth McGregor

The Ice Child
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

  • Hardcover: May 2001,
    400 pages.
    Paperback: Sep 2002,
    448 pages.

    Publication Information

  • Rate this book


Buy This Book

About this Book

Print Excerpt


"But anxious ..."

"Oh, yes."

"And his wife."

"Alicia?" He stopped. Paused just a fraction too long. "Yes, of course."

Jo smiled. "I would like to talk to her. Is that possible?"

To her surprise Bolton blushed. "No."

The abruptness of the reply took her aback. "A very short interview," she said. "Perhaps a photograph?"

Bolton shook his head. "Alicia never gets involved in the public side."

"Just five minutes. Do you have her address?"

"No, I'm sorry ... if you want to ask me about Doug's journey, anything about that ..."

She let it go temporarily. "I might as well tell you, I know nothing about Doug Marshall and I don't understand this passion for Greenland."

"You don't know his background?" Bolton asked.

"Not really."

"Qilatitsoq?"

"No."

Bolton shook his head. He stood up and took a box file from one of the closest shelves. Opening it, he took out a sheaf of papers and began removing pages from among the pile. "I was going to make a press release, if I ever got around to it," he said. "Take a copy. It's Doug's curriculum vitae ... a couple of articles he's written...."

She took the papers from him. "Thank you."

"The Inuit communities are where he started," Bolton continued. "Because of Franklin. Franklin has been Doug's lifelong passion. Of course, he's done other things--a considerable number of other things--but the Inuit and Franklin were the subject of his original doctoral thesis. That set him off on the Greenland mummies. You've heard of them?"

"I'm sorry."

Bolton ran a hand through his hair. "Six women and two children. Dead for over five hundred years. They were in a magnificent state of preservation."

"Oh ... like these ones they found in the Andes?"

"Similar. Similar preservation. Cold and dry, you see?"

"And these were ..."

"Inuit. What we once called Eskimo. Or Esquimaux." He spelled it for her.

"And this is why Doug Marshall is there again, because of mummies?"

"Yes."

"He's found more?"

"Not quite. Doug feels there is one other, a crucial religious site, deeper in the fjord."

"I see," Jo said. But in all honesty she couldn't see. A people living on ice. She couldn't imagine a place dominated by the dark.

"And of course," Bolton said, "there's the Franklin connection."

The phone rang. He picked it up.

Jo sat watching him. She had no idea at all who--or what--Franklin was. She felt her mind go momentarily blank and recognized it as her hitting-the-wall feeling, a sensation she habitually got when her interest in a story waned, or the smell of it left her. A good story had that speeding sensation, and the scent of revelation. There was nothing to reveal here, except a passion for the dead. And even that was an old story. She gently tapped Bolton's desk gently, to attract his attention.

"How long has he been looking for these other bodies?" she whispered.

He put his hand over the mouthpiece. "Six years."

"Six ..."

Forget that, then, she thought. How crazy did you have to be, for God's sake, to look for six years for dead people in a place that was permanently frozen?

Bolton started to flick the pages of the diary open in front of him. His gaze drifted away, as he listened to the caller on the other end of the line. "He has an oral at two-thirty...."

Jo got to her feet. Taking a piece of paper from her bag, she scribbled on it, Are you free at lunchtime?

He glanced at it, nodded, wrote 1:30 on the page. Perhaps.

"Thanks," she said.

Copyright 2001, Elizabeth McGregor. All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced without written permission from the publisher - Dutton Books.

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!
Member Benefits

Join Now!

Check the advantages!
Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year

    •  
    • FREE
    • MEMBER
    • Range of media reviews for each book
    • Excerpts of all featured books
    • Author bios, interviews and pronunciations
    • Browse by genre
    • Book club discussions
    • Book club advice and reading guides
    • BookBrowse reviews and "beyond the book" back-stories
    •  
    • Reviews of notable books ahead of publication
    •  
    • Free books to read and review (US Only)
    •  
    • Browse for the best books by time period, setting & theme
    •  
    • Read-alike suggestions for thousands of books and authors
    •  
    • 'My Reading List" to keep track of your books
    •  

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket: Shotgun Lovesongs
    Shotgun Lovesongs
    by Nickolas Butler
    Nickolas Butler's debut novel, Shotgun Lovesongs, follows five life-long friends, now in their mid-...
  • Book Jacket: Gemini
    Gemini
    by Carol Cassella
    How good is Gemini, Carol Cassella's book about a Seattle intensive care physician who becomes ...
  • Book Jacket: The Goldfinch
    The Goldfinch
    by Donna Tartt
    Winner of the 2014 Pulitzer for Fiction.

    Her canvas is vast. To frame a story about art, love and ...

First Impressions

Members read and review books ahead
of publication. See what they think
in First Impressions!

Books that
expand your
horizons.

Visitors can view a lot of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only

Find out more.

Book Discussions
Book Jacket

The Storied Life of A. J. Fikry
by Gabrielle Zevin

Published Apr. 2014

Join the discussion!

  1.  254Cartwheel:
    Jennifer duBois
  2.  143Happier at Home:
    Gretchen Rubin

All Discussions

Who Said...

Being slightly paranoid is like being slightly pregnant – it tends to get worse.

Click Here to find out who said this, as well as discovering other famous literary quotes!

Word Play

Solve this clue:

P Your O C

and be entered to win..

Books thatinspire you.Handpicked.

Books you'll stay up all night reading; books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, books that will expand your mind and inspire you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.