Richard J. King
2024 |
Sports & Recreation

“A masterfully curated collection...You don’t have to be a sailor to be blown away by this fascinating, bighearted book.” —Nathaniel Philbrick, author of In the Heart of the Sea, Travels with George, and Second Wind A story as vast and exhilarating as the open ocean itself, SAILING ALONE chronicles the daring, disastrous, and often absurd history of those who chose to sail across the ocean, in very small boats, alone. Sailing by yourself, out of sight of land, can be invigorating and terrifying, compelling and tedious - and sometimes all of the above in one morning. But it is also a wide expanse of time in which to think. Sailing Alone tells the story of some of the remarkable people who, over the last four centuries, have spent weeks and months, moving slowly over the world's largest laboratory: a capricious and startling place in which to observe oneself, the weather, the stars, and countless sea creatures, from the tiniest to the most massive and threatening. Richard J. King profiles characters famous, diverse, international, and obscure, from Joshua Slocum of 1898 to modern teenagers daring to take the challenge. They see strange hallucinations, lie to us (and themselves) on their travel logs, encounter sharks, befriend birds, and experience ESP, all part of the unnerving reality of extended isolation. And some disappear altogether. Sailing Alone also recounts the author's own nearly catastrophic solo crossing of the Atlantic, and the mystery of his inexplicable survival one sunny afternoon. An enormously engaging new book for skippers and armchair voyagers alike.

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Sailing Alone

A Surprising History of Isolation and Survival at Sea