Author: Nicholas Gannon
Narrator: Bronson Pinchot
Publisher: Blackstone Audio, 2015
Format: 5 compact discs, 6.25 hours
Genre: juvenile fiction
Synopsis: Archer B. Helmsley longs for adventure. It must be in his blood since his grandparents were famous explorers who got lost on an iceberg. Will Archer have his adventure?
Thoughts: My son and I listened to this audio book in the car. We both really liked the narrator who did a wonderful job bringing this story to life, but while looking at the author's website I discovered some of the illustrations, which the author created himself, and I feel like we missed out. They are fantastic! Also, the author has written and illustrated a second book, The Doldrums and the Hemsleys, and the illustrations in that book are also beautiful. I especially like the ones in the second book because I love snow and part of the story takes place in a blizzard.
The writing style is humorous and whimsical, which adds another level of entertainment. The characters have great personalities with details that make them come to life to a point- more like cartoon characters than living people. The settings, of which some are quite eccentric, are brought to life by particulars the author provides.
The Doldrums is a story about friendship, family, and adventure. It shows how you can have an adventure anywhere, even just in your own backyard. This may be the one disappointment for the reader. If reading the book to experience a grand Antarctic adventure, the reader is let down because this never happens. There is a different kind of adventure, so expectations may not be met. Sorry if this is a spoiler.
If you are looking for a book that is whimsical and funny with good characters, check this out. If you are looking for an Antarctic adventure, look somewhere else.