North of Hope: A Daughter's Arctic Journey - eBook  -     By: Shannon Polson
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North of Hope: A Daughter's Arctic Journey - eBook

Zondervan / 2013 / ePub

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Product Information

Format: DRM Protected ePub
Vendor: Zondervan
Publication Date: 2013
ISBN: 9780310328254
ISBN-13: 9780310328254
UPC: 025986328252
Availability: In Stock

Publisher's Description

After author Shannon Huffman Polson’s parents are killed by a wild grizzly bear in Alaska’s Arctic, her quest for healing is recounted with heartbreaking candor in North of Hope.


Undergirded by her faith, Polson’s expedition takes her through her through the wilds of her own grief as well as God’s beautiful, yet wild and untamed creation—ultimately arriving at a place of unshaken hope. She travels from the suburbs of Seattle to the concert hall, performing Mozart’s Requiem with the Seattle Symphony, to the wilderness of Alaska—where she retraces their final days along an Arctic river.


This beautifully written book is for anyone who has experienced grief and is looking for new ways to understand overwhelming loss. Readers will find empathy and understanding through Polson’s journey. North of Hope is also for those who love the outdoors and find solace and healing in nature, as they experience Alaska’s wild Arctic through the author’s travels.

Author Bio

Shannon Polson lives and writes in the Pacific Northwest. She was a contributing writer to More Than 85Broads, and her work has appeared in Seattle and Alaska Magazines, Cirque Journal, Adventure Magazine, and Trachodon, among others. 

Polson graduated with a B.A. from Duke University in English Literature, an M.B.A. from the Tuck School at Dartmouth, and an M.F.A. from Seattle Pacific University. She served eight years as an attack helicopter pilot in the Army and worked five years in corporate marketing and management roles before turning to writing full time.

 Polson serves on the board of the Alaska Wilderness League and sings with the critically acclaimed Seattle Pro Musica. She has looked for adventure and challenge anywhere she can find it, scuba diving, sky diving and climbing around the world, including ascents of Denali and Kilimanjaro, and completing two Ironman triathlons. She and her family enjoy backpacking, any kind of skiing, paddling, and spending as much time outdoors as they can in the Western states and Alaska. In September 2009, Polson was awarded the Trailblazer Woman of Valor award from Washington State Senator Maria Cantwell.

Product Reviews

3.5 Stars Out Of 5
3.5 out of 5
4.1 out Of 5
(4.1 out of 5)
3.9 out Of 5
(3.9 out of 5)
Meets Expectations:
3.3 out Of 5
(3.3 out of 5)
of customers would recommend this product to a friend.
Displaying items 1-5 of 21
Page 1 of 5 12345 Next
  1. new zealand
    Age: 55-65
    Gender: female
    2 Stars Out Of 5
    An interest in arctic river rafting
    June 11, 2013
    new zealand
    Age: 55-65
    Gender: female
    Quality: 4
    Value: 4
    Meets Expectations: 2
    This review was written for North of Hope: A Daughter's Arctic Journey.
    I think this book would appeal to those who enjoy river rafting and those who are journeying through grief, as I was.
  2. 3 Stars Out Of 5
    May 16, 2013
    Quality: 3
    Value: 3
    Meets Expectations: 2
    This review was written for North of Hope: A Daughter's Arctic Journey.
    Polson's North of Hope was my latest read from the BookSneeze program. I was very excited to read about the author's journey which takes us through the Alaskan wilderness as Polson retraces the steps her father and stepmother took before their unfortunate death by a grizzly bear. Although this is a story worthy of sharing, I found Polson's writing style slow and boring, which made for a rather rough read. Not only is Polson's writing style hard to get through, but the topic is rather dark (obviously) and difficult to swallow. Therefore, the act of reading through this sad and tragic story was rather trying.

    I feel as though this could be a good book for someone to read if they, too, are experiencing loss or trying to cope with the death of a loved one. However, I urge you to first search for other texts to lift your spirits because this book doesn't seem to resolve with a happy ending. In fact, I'm not sure that Polson ever resolves anything at all. We seem to be left in the dark concerning whether Polson found her trip helpful in coping with the death of her loved ones.

    Overall, although this is an intriguing story and one certain worthy of being told, it is very slow paced and the author's writing style makes it difficult to read. I would recommend it to individuals currently dealing with loss, but would urge you to not make it your only source of comfort.
  3. El Cajon, CA
    2 Stars Out Of 5
    A Journey of Grief and Healing
    May 8, 2013
    Janet P
    El Cajon, CA
    Quality: 3
    Value: 3
    Meets Expectations: 2
    This review was written for North of Hope: A Daughter's Arctic Journey.
    North of Hope A Daughter's Arctic Journey is written by Shannon Huffman Polson. After Shannon's father and stepmother Kathy are killed by a grizzly bear in Alaska, Shannon travels to Alaska to retrace their journey. As Shannon tells the story of her journey, which includes her adopted brother Ned and his friend, she recalls anecdotes about her father and her life growing up with him. Towards the end of the journey,(after a violent confrontation with her brother), Shannon starts to feel acceptance of the situation and states that this acceptance is how she will honor her father and stepmother.

    My thoughts: I felt a little depressed reading this book. I also didn't understand why she would travel with her brother Ned when they seemed to have a contentious relationship, but maybe it was meant to happen because after the confrontation with Ned, Shannon experienced a new loss of relationship and a new sadness. She then decided to choose joy over pain and gratitude over grief. And for the first time, prompted by greater losses, she could let go. I'm glad I read the book to the end because it does end on a positive note and happiness for Shannon.
  4. 4 Stars Out Of 5
    May 5, 2013
    Jennifer M
    Quality: 4
    Value: 4
    Meets Expectations: 4
    This review was written for North of Hope: A Daughter's Arctic Journey.
    "I wasn't sure whether I'd come to this wild space to find myself or lose myself, or whether I had the capacity for either." ~ Shannon Huffman Polson

    North of Hope tells the true story of Shannon Huffman Polson, whose father and step mother were tragically killed by bears while rafting and camping in the remote Alaskan Arctic. Ms Polson decides to undergo a life-changing journey, both figuratively and literally, by leaving her home in Seattle and traveling to the Arctic to re-trace her father's steps. She writes in great detail about both the trip and her emotional experiences in coming to terms with the loss while she's there, as well as weaving in back story all throughout the book.

    The author has a lovely, almost poetic, style of writing, and the book is very rich in vivid imagery. I truly felt like I was experiencing the journey with her, as her descriptions of both the Alaskan wilderness and her mental state at the time were clear, specific, and painstakingly transcribed. The emotional anguish of the trip was palpable, especially in the latter quarter of the book, as she gets closer and closer to the spot where her father camped and ultimately died.

    Unfortunately, the book's strength proved to be a weakness as well. At times the detail was so great and so lengthy that it bogged the book down, and made certain sections drag unnecessarily. I found myself reading with great interest on minute, and then skimming the next.

    However, as it was by all accounts a very intimate and personal story, it doesn't seem too fair to nitpick its delivery. This was her journey, and I admire her strength and tenacity in both choosing to take it at all, and then so beautifully sharing it with others.

    *I received this book from Zondervon and Handlebar Publishing in exchange for my honest review. All opinions are my own.*
  5. New Jersey
    Age: 45-54
    Gender: female
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    May 1, 2013
    Pilar Arsenec
    New Jersey
    Age: 45-54
    Gender: female
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    This review was written for North of Hope: A Daughter's Arctic Journey.
    Shannon Huffman Polson is a virtuoso. She writes with such brilliance, as she weaves her story of loss and hope. She takes you on her pilgrimage through the Alaskan Artic in search for answers. Her experiences will leave you breathless, in wonder and awe.

    I love memoirs like this one, written with such depth, thoughtfulness and creativity. Besides which, Shannon Huffman Polson is an extraordinary writer.

    I highly recommend North of Hope, it is brilliant. One of the best memoirs I have read in a long time.
Displaying items 1-5 of 21
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