The Ice by Laline Paull

The Ice

Laline Paull

This eco-thriller is set in the near future when the melting polar ice caps are attracting unwelcome tourism and commercial exploitation to the Arctic. Not just a polemic about global warming, but like the melting ice, this is a chilling, multilayered tale where hidden agenda, greed and betrayal are gradually revealed to show there is far more happening below the surface than is at first apparent.


They were in a huge cavern, like some ice giant’s baronial hall ...
Parts of the structure glowed to life under their double gaze. Slowly, amazed, grinning at each other, they went a few steps deeper, nudging each other to point out the blue ribs and rafters of ice above them, a cathedral crossed with the inside of a whale. They gazed on a massive slab resting on smaller blocks, like a chieftain’s table. Below it, softer-shaped extrusions formed huge sleeping dogs. Here and there were stalactites spreading like candelabra, and other strange forms twisted into ropes hung with ice tassels ...
'Tell me now,' Tom said, 'While the cat's away.'
It took a few seconds for Sean to remember what he meant. Kingsmith. That whole mess above the ice ...
Tom stopped suddenly. He turned away, his beam flashing over the blue-and-white ice walls. Then back to one spot, where the blue ice gleamed more vividly.
'Shit. Look -'
They stopped arguing, hearing the tearing sound. Only a second, then it stopped. Then came another sound – the high-pitched moan of ice squeezing ice.

  • Tilt by Max Oberon
  • The Killing Ship by Simon Beaufort
  • The North Water by Ian McGuire

Books with similar mood

The Expats

Chris Pavone

The Saturday Night Ghost Club

Craig Davidson

Empire of Sand

Tasha Suri

Piggy Monk Square

Grace Jolliffe

The Limits of the World

Andrew Raymond Drennan

Tango for a Torturer

Daniel Chavarria

The Great Stink

Clare Clark

The Lost City

Henry Shukman

The Housekeeper

Melanie Wallace

Animal's People

Indra Sinha

The Water Cure

Sophie Mackintosh

Welcome to Lagos

Chibundu Onuzo


Joanna Briscoe

Tiger Hills

Sarita Mandanna

The Girl with Glass Feet

Ali Shaw

The Field of Blood

Denise Mina


Sarah Waters

Brixton Beach

Roma Tearne

The Infatuations

Javier Marias

The Dream Life of Sukhanov

Olga Grushin

The Stockholm Octavo

Karen Engelmann

From Darkest Skies

Sam Peters

Hunters in the Dark

Lawrence Osborne

All the Birds in the Sky

Charlie Jane Anders


Naomi Novik

The Silversmith's Wife

Sophia Tobin

The Devil and Miss Prym

Paulo Coelho

The Lemon Grove

Helen Walsh

Isabel's Skin

Peter Benson

The Meat Tree

Gwyneth Lewis

The Earthquake Bird

Susanna Jones

A Cowrie of Hope

Binwell Sinyangwe

The Kites

Romain Gary

The Golem and the Djinni

Helene Wecker

The Silent Boy

Andrew Taylor

The Visitor

Sheri S Tepper

Killing Time

Caleb Carr

The Anatomy of Ghosts

Andrew Taylor


Victor Fox

Black Star Nairobi

Mukoma Wa Ngugi


Carolina De Robertis

It's Fine By Me

Per Petterson

Pandora's Star

Peter F Hamilton

Q and A

Vikas Swarup

Girls of Paper and Fire

Natasha Ngan

The Den

Abi Maxwell

Children of Earth and Sky

Guy Gavriel Kay

When Captain Flint Was Still a Good Man

Nick Dybek

Snake Ropes

Jess Richards