Girl in Ice

Erica Ferencik. Scout, $27 (304p) ISBN 978-1-9821-4302-2

Linguist Val Chesterfield, the narrator of this exemplary thriller from Ferencik (Into the Jungle), grapples with two mysteries—the apparent suicide of her twin brother, Andy, while on a research expedition in northern Greenland that included the discovery of an eight- or nine-year-old girl who was miraculously revived after being found frozen in a glacier. Despite her fears of travel, Val accepts an invitation from expedition leader Wyatt Speeks to travel to the Arctic to see whether she can decipher the child’s language, unknown even to the region’s indigenous people. Wyatt and his team are hoping the ice cores they’re studying can offer answers that could avert a climate disaster at a time when sudden, freezing storms are occurring with increasing frequency worldwide. Val’s moving struggles to communicate with the girl alternate with her investigation into Andy’s death, which she suspects was a homicide. Trenchant details about catastrophic climate change bolster a creative plot featuring authentic characters, particularly the anxious, flawed Val. Ferencik outdoes Michael Crichton in the convincing way she mixes emotion and science. Agent: Erin Harris, Folio Literary Management. (Mar.)
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