Saturday, September 24, 2022

A Blizzard of Polar Bears by Alice Henderson

About the Book

Fresh off her wolverine study in Montana, wildlife biologist Alex Carter lands a job studying a threatened population of polar bears in the Canadian Arctic. Embedded with a small team of Arctic researchers, she tracks the majestic bears by air, following them over vast, snowy terrain, spending days leaning precariously out of a helicopter with a tranquilizer gun, until she can get down on the ice to examine them up close.

But as her study progresses, and she gathers data on the health of individual bears, things start to go awry. Her helicopter pilot quits unexpectedly, equipment goes missing, and a late-night intruder breaks into her lab and steals the samples she’s collected. She realizes that someone doesn’t want her to complete her study, but Alex is not easily deterred.

Managing to find a replacement pilot, she returns to the icy expanses of Hudson Bay. But the helicopter catches fire in midflight, forcing the team to land on a vast sheet of white far from civilization. Surviving on the frozen landscape is difficult enough, but as armed assailants close in on snowmobiles, Alex must rely on her skills and tenacity to survive this onslaught and carry out her mission.

You can read an excerpt here.

My Review

This is a novel for readers who like information about wildlife. Henderson takes us to the frozen north where we learn a great deal about polar bears, from research to poaching. There is a quite a bit about protecting the animals since that is the focus of the heroine. We read about the factors endangering the bears with an emphasis on climate factors caused by humans.

The plot is one filled with suspense. Unfortunately, much of the suspense is the heroine's own fault. She goes out on her own, for example, just after she had been rescued from a deadly situation. Of course, she faces another deadly experience. That way of creating suspense does not sit well with me.

There are many bad guys in the novel. There are two plot lines. One involves a murdered diver having found something and other is Alex's research being frustrated. The two come together in the end.

There does not seem to be any character growth of Alex in this novel although we do find out who her mysterious protector has been. While I think the plot is faulty, I do like the novel for all the information it contains and will be looking for the next one in the series.

My rating: 4/5 stars.

You can read my review of the first book in the series: A Solitude of Wolverines.


About the Author

In addition to being a writer, Alice Henderson is a wildlife sanctuary monitor, geographic information systems specialist, and bioacoustician. She documents wildlife on specialized recording equipment, checks remote cameras, creates maps, and undertakes wildlife surveys to determine what species are present on preserves, while ensuring there are no signs of poaching. She’s surveyed for the presence of grizzlies, wolves, wolverines, jaguars, endangered bats, and more. You can find out more at

William Morrow, 352 pages.

(My star ratings: 5-I love it, 4-I like it, 3-It's OK, 2-I don't like it, 1-I hate it.)

No comments: