A Captive in the Land (novel)
A Captive in the Land (1962) is a novel by Australian writer James Aldridge.
|Publisher||Hamish Hamilton, London|
|Preceded by||The Last Exile|
|Followed by||My Brother Tom|
While undertaking a meteorological survey of the Arctic the crew of a Dakota aircraft observe a wrecked plane on the ice with one person moving around the area. With the Dakota unable to land Rupert Royce volunteers to parachute down to the wreckage to offer assistance. He succeeds but soon learns that the Dakota itself has crashed on returning to base with the loss of all the crew. Royce and the survivor spend the winter in the fuselage of the plane and then Royce decides to seek help by trekking 20 miles across the Arctic ice. He succeeds and is invited to Moscow to receive a medal for his deeds. As he is about to leave British intelligence requests he undertake some espionage activities during his travels in Russia.
A reviewer in The Canberra Times was very impressed with the first 100 pages of the novel, but found problems after that: "In recounting this journey Aldridge is brilliant and convincing. Like the doyens of all adventure books he has an incredible eye for detailed realism. After this, Mr. Aldridge goes on far too long."
- Epigraph: "A captive in the land, / A stranger and a youth, / He heard the king's command, / He saw that writing's truth." Lord Byron, Vision of Belshazzar, Hebrew Melodies