Get a free audiobook

$14.95/month + applicable taxes after 30 days. Cancel anytime.

Publisher's Summary

A mesmerizing odyssey through an unforgiving landscape, and the rich history it reveals.

What does it mean to explore and confront the unknown? Beyond the Trees recounts Adam Shoalts's epic, never-before-attempted solo crossing of Canada's mainland Arctic in a single season. It's also a multilayered story that weaves the narrative of Shoalts's journey into accounts of other adventurers, explorers, First Nations, fur traders, dreamers, eccentrics, and bush pilots to create an unforgettable tale of adventure and exploration. 

Interspersed with his stories of navigating mazes of shifting ice floes, facing down snarling bears and galloping musk-ox, and portaging along knife-edge cliffs above furious rapids, are the fascinating legends, historic persons, and incredible anecdotes that make up the lore of the North. They include the saga of the Mad Trapper, a man whose feats of endurance and ingenuity were almost as legendary as his violent end; the story of the controversial Vilhjalmur Stefansson, a redoubtable dreamer but also one who was blamed for the deaths of his companions; the tale of the "Lost Patrol" of the Mounties who perished in a blinding blizzard; the formidable Tyrell brothers who together charted much of Canada's North; the eerie ruins of Fort Confidence that was built nearly two centuries ago on Great Bear Lake; and the decaying remnants of gold prospector David Douglas's cabin overlooking the Dease River. The North is indeed a perilous place. Also told in the book is the tragedy of John Hornby and his two companions who starved to death on the banks of the Thelon River; their bones are still resting just above the riverbank in shallow graves. 

Beyond the Trees also discusses folklore about wendigoes, strange lights, and the mystery of Angikuni Lake, where in 1930 an entire Inuit camp supposedly vanished without a trace. These mysteries and wonders are Shoalts's only companions as he sets out on his own path through the adventure of a lifetime.

©2019 Adam Shoalts (P)2019 Allen Lane

What the critics say

Shortlisted for the 2020 Louise de Kiriline Lawrence Award for Nonfiction 

National best seller

“[Shoalts] brings us along on his solo journey across the Arctic, infused with the wonder of seeing this majestic land and the urgency of making it back before winter sets in.” (Toronto Star)

“[A]mple moments of adrenaline and suspense and descriptions of breathtaking natural beauty in his voyages, but it’s his thirst for the unknown - the blank spots - that resonated.” (The New York Review of Books

“When reading Beyond the Trees, one gets the impression of author Adam Shoalts as a kind of Jack Kerouac meets Jack Reacher: an obsessive wanderer at his calmest in the midst of catastrophe.” (Atlantic Books Today

What listeners say about Beyond the Trees

Average Customer Ratings
Overall
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    119
  • 4 Stars
    41
  • 3 Stars
    8
  • 2 Stars
    5
  • 1 Stars
    1
Performance
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    90
  • 4 Stars
    44
  • 3 Stars
    9
  • 2 Stars
    3
  • 1 Stars
    2
Story
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    105
  • 4 Stars
    31
  • 3 Stars
    6
  • 2 Stars
    3
  • 1 Stars
    2

Reviews - Please select the tabs below to change the source of reviews.

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

feels like retelling the same event

I feel.like I listened to the same event retold 4 or 5 times. just didn't engage me at all

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

What an experience!

Adam is a adventurer, passionate about Canada and a thrill seeker. I am jealous of the journey he was able to complete across Canada's Arctic. I would recommend this novel to anyone who needs inspiration for nature and the beauty that's in front of you once you put your phone down. I can't wait to hear Adam speak at the event on Friday! Thanks for taking your readers along on your Journey!

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Took me across one of the last-remaining paradises

Adam Shoalts' adventure is worth listening to. Listening to the descriptions of places and events is such an experience.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Great book

For some stories it’s extra special if the narrator is also the author. It makes it extra special. In this case it was fantastic. He can write AND narrate very good.
Fantastic adventure through our beloved Canada!

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

Too repetitive

I found the story too repetitive. Maybe this is the nature of a canoe trip through Canada’s high north? But one could cut the text by 50% and still convey as much interesting material.

Sorry, wasn’t my cup of tea.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Great adventure story!

For someone who loves nature and being in the outdoors, I thoroughly enjoyed Adam Shoals’ account of his journey across the Arctic, especially when life circumstances does not allow me to adventure into the wild as I would like. His tale is inspiring and had me staying up late to hear how the next lake crossing or rapid riding turned out. His writing paints a clear picture of the beauty of Canada’s wild, and hearing him tell the story of his adventure makes it all the more exciting. I also enjoyed listening to interesting facts about the wildlife and various historical landmarks he encountered.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Great story

Very well-written.

Narrator not bad but had an annoying tendency to over-enunciate certain words (ie Musk...Ox instead of just saying muskox lol).

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Transcended

Beyond the trees look my out of my living room or bedroom, and plunked me right into the large lakes of Northern 🇨🇦. I visualized myself canoeing through the water ways, and felt instantly calmer. Loved this book, and I will listen to it again.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

an imaginative and blissful escape of my busy life

i so wished i was there!!!! beautifully written, the author makes me feel like i know him. Being from sudbury, he isnt far away.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Yes it did

Yes this book made me care more about our land and its wild nature. It established my desire to do what I can to preserve and take care of the wildlife and landscape of the North. Thank you Adam Shoults.

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Martha Doggett
  • 2021-03-10

Victor,Co

What a trip! Enthralling and captivating. Shoalts writes a story that’s for the armchair adventurers sans the bugs. More importantly he reminds us of the inherent need of all of us to seek,find, and absorb the nature around us and preserve it... imagine yourself actually having to get used to talking to people again. Good stuff

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Amazon Customer
  • 2020-07-26

Great Adventure Story

Amazingly told, put you right there, the details aren’t overwhelming, this listen kept me transfixed, from chapter to chapter, one of my Favorites on Audible so far, at nearly 60 plus Tittles, Audiitor is believable and Genuine who I believe is the Author, Great armchair Adventurer, and the remote places visited breathtaking A+

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • gerry
  • 2020-07-08

Fantastic and anxious ride

This book keep me on the edge of my seat, like he is the author so you know he makes it but like how the EFF does one man, one young man, do that SOLO!!!! Enjoy this book and find out I mean, now I believe it’s time for me to Katie his advice and book a back woods camping trip. Thank you Adam for bringing me into this wild ride!

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Brickyard
  • 2020-06-24

Adam's a badass and doesn't know it

Adams a badass his adventures are insane. the trips he takes are never ending not only is adam a beast physically his mental aspect is second to none.