At the End of the World
Notes on a 1941 Murder Rampage in the Arctic and the Threat of Religious Extremism, Loss of Indigenous Culture, and Danger of Digital LifeAn exploration of indigenous trauma, climate change, and digital culture in the shadow of a series of Inuit murders in Canada in 1941
In a remote corner of the Arctic in 1941, a meteor shower flashed across the sky for an unusually long time. Taking this to be a sign, one of the local Inuit proclaimed himself Jesus Christ. Another proclaimed himself God. Anyone who didn’t believe in them was Satan. ...
In a remote corner of the Arctic in 1941, a meteor shower flashed across the sky for an unusually long time. Taking this to be a sign, one of the local Inuit proclaimed himself Jesus Christ. Another proclaimed himself God. Anyone who didn’t believe in them was Satan. Violence ensued.
At the End of the World isn’t just the remarkable story of a series of murders that occurred on the Belcher Islands, a group of wind-blasted rocks in Canada’s Hudson Bay. It’s also a starting place for a deeper cultural exploration. Against the backdrop of the murders, which highlight the fact that senseless violence in the name of religion is not a contemporary phenomenon and that a even people as seemingly peaceful as the Inuit can turn to chaos at the hands of one person’s delusion, Millman addresses the burgeoning dawn of the digital era, following the murders’ trail to show how our obsession with screens is not unlike a cult and offering a warning cry against the erosion of humanity and the destruction of the environment. The story becomes a confluence of the consequences of generational trauma, outside religious evangelism, systemic racism against indigenous people, the perilous passage from the natural to the digital world, and what it means to be human in a time of technological dominance and climate disasters.
At the End of the World, available for the first time in paperback, is not a straightforward tale of true crime but an examination of many of the issues that have become dominant in the global conversation. In snippets of reflection, Millman asks us to look north for answers to many of the questions we all hold, literally, in our hands.
Praise for At the End of the World:
"A dark and twisted story of religion, violence, and lasting trauma, this true crime book is chilling in more way than one." ― Bustle
“Millman’s book is a plea for keeping the sanctity of the unique cultures and landscape of the Far North.” ― Explorers Journal
“A poetic assertion of what it means to be a human being in the 21st century...Perhaps Millman’s greatest accomplishment is that, despite its dark implications, At the End of the World is a pleasure to read.” ― Adventures NW
"A smart, emotional, and thought-provoking analysis of a lingering trauma. Millman has created a quiet and stunning investigative masterpiece." ― Booklist (starred)
"[You] should be impressed with the manner by which Millman connects the dots...he skillfully provides parallels to contemporary times on the dangers of one culture infiltrating another." ― Kirkus
“A bizarre series of cult murders receives a fresh look in At the End of the World” ― Shelf Awareness
"Millman tells this tale in a free-flowing narrative style, interspersing his interviews of the remaining survivors and their relatives with a history of the region (including a sardonic account of the filming of the 1922 documentary "Nanook of the North" on the mainland), a liberal peppering of quotes from diverse authors on nature and on technology and the consequences of old and new cultures clashing." ― WBUR's The ARTery
"This tragedy is compelling." ― Virginia Quarterly Review
"Lawrence Millman is a true original. The Arctic seems his natural landscape; it’s as if he knows how to eavesdrop on the spirit world there. At the End of the World puts literature of the North into a hypnotic fugue state, and it’s just whopping good storytelling. People don’t just read Millman, they collect him." ― Howard Norman, author of The Ghost Clause and The Bird Artist
"At the End of the World is a lamentation. And not for the loss of life at the hands of insane murderers. But the loss of connection to our natural world. I think Millman’s struggle to write the story (at least he claims to have struggled―to my eyes, words flow freely and wonderfully from his “Ticonderoga Tri-Write No. 2”) comes from this realization." ― Fungi
"Well-written and deeply philosophical." ― Alaska Dispatch
"An enlightening, beautifully constructed read." ― What's Nonfiction?
"Unique and compelling...At the End of the World is a one of the more unique historical crime books I've ever come across and most certainly worth your attention. There's a lot to think about in this one and, more importantly, a lot we should be thinking about." ― Coleen Mondor, TinyLetter.com
"Lawrence Millman is ... a master writer, naturalist, and adventurer."― Robert Pyle, author of Mariposa Road
"Millman delivers an artful jeremiad and a hell of an exciting story." ― Gary Moore, author of Burning in China
“Quite the best thing I’ve read in a long time.” ― Paul Kingsnorth, creator of the Dark Mountain Project
“A lovely, elegiac, and mysterious book!”― John Griesemer, author of No One Thinks of Greenland
“Larry Millman’s At the End of the World is many things: a loving description of Inuit life; an account of the end of the world that had already happened; and a jeremiad against the computer, all told in a voice that is a cross between the dark aphorisms of E M Cioran and the timeless portraits in Chatwin’s The Songlines. In it you will learn that Thoreau is the only person in the afterlife without a computer, and see a carving of Donald Duck, with the detailed body of an Eider. Read it and weep for the Old Ways that we have lost.” ― Steve Bodio
"At the End of the World is a brilliant and original book by one of the boldest and most visionary writers of our era, or any other." ― Howard Mosher
“At the End of the World is an eloquent lament for a dying way of a life, and a prophetic warning about our own dangerous shift from the natural to the a virtual world.” ― Outpost
"Millman guides us to a place where spirits inhabit stone, snow, and seals, keep us company, and make our lives whole in their embrace. Ignoring reason and propriety, he opens our hearts to survival, to magic, and to ecstasy." ― Michael Morrison, co-author of Journey Into Climate
"[Millman's] ideas about our natural world and what we are doing to it and to ourselves crackle with a meaning that needs to be addressed." ― BookLoons
"This book was fascinating from a variety of perspectives and it based on a true story. I enjoyed it and I believe you will too!" ― Bookpleasures.com