"Beyond terrific. I didn't want it to end." --Bill Bryson
Driven by a passion for travel and history and a love of ships and the sea, former Monty Python stalwart and beloved television globe-trotter Michael Palin explores the world of HMS Erebus, last seen on an ill-fated voyage to chart the Northwest Passage.
Michael Palin brings the fascinating story of the Erebus and its occupants to life, from its construction as a bomb vessel in 1826 through the flagship years of James Clark Ross's Antarctic expedition and finally to Sir John Franklin's quest for the holy grail of navigation--a route through the Northwest Passage, where the ship disappeared into the depths of the sea for more than 150 years. It was rediscovered under the arctic waters in 2014.
Palin travels across the world--from Tasmania to the Falkland Islands and the Canadian Arctic--to offer a firsthand account of the terrain and conditions that would have confronted the Erebus and her doomed final crew. Delving into the research, he describes the intertwined careers of the two men who shared the ship's journeys: Ross, the organizational genius who mapped much of the Antarctic coastline and oversaw some of the earliest scientific experiments to be conducted there; and Franklin, who, at the age of sixty and after a checkered career, commanded the ship on its last disastrous venture. Expertly researched and illustrated with maps, photographs, paintings, and engravings, Erebus is an evocative account of two journeys: one successful and forgotten, the other tragic yet unforgettable.
A NATIONAL BESTSELLER
A NEW YORK TIMES NOTABLE BOOK
AN NPR BEST BOOK OF THE YEAR
ONE OF JANET MASLIN'S MUST-READ BOOKS OF THE SUMMER
A NEW YORK TIMES EDITOR'S CHOICE
ONE OF OUTSIDE MAGAZINE'S BEST BOOKS OF THE SUMMER
ONE OF AMAZON'S BEST NONFICTION BOOKS OF THE YEAR SO FAR
"A powerful and affecting story, beautifully handled by Slade, a journalist who clearly knows ships and the sea."--Douglas Preston, New York Times Book Review
"A Perfect Storm for a new generation."
--Ben Mezrich, bestselling author of The Accidental Billionaires: The Founding of Facebook
On October 1, 2015, Hurricane Joaquin barreled into the Bermuda Triangle and swallowed the container ship El Faro whole, resulting in the worst American shipping disaster in thirty-five years. No one could fathom how a vessel equipped with satellite communications, a sophisticated navigation system, and cutting-edge weather forecasting could suddenly vanish--until now.
Relying on hundreds of exclusive interviews with family members and maritime experts, as well as the words of the crew members themselves--whose conversations were captured by the ship's data recorder--journalist Rachel Slade unravels the mystery of the sinking of El Faro. As she recounts the final twenty-four hours onboard, Slade vividly depicts the officers' anguish and fear as they struggled to carry out Captain Michael Davidson's increasingly bizarre commands, which, they knew, would steer them straight into the eye of the storm. Taking a hard look at America's aging merchant marine fleet, Slade also reveals the truth about modern shipping--a cut-throat industry plagued by razor-thin profits and ever more violent hurricanes fueled by global warming.
A richly reported account of a singular tragedy, Into the Raging Sea takes us into the heart of an age-old American industry, casting new light on the hardworking men and women who paid the ultimate price in the name of profit.
"You won't want to put it] down."--Los Angeles Times "An exceptional adventure . . . Highly recommended to readers who delight in adventure, suspense, and the thrill of discovering history at their fingertips."--Library Journal (starred review) "A terrific read . . . The book gallops along at a blistering pace, shifting us deftly between the seventeenth century and the present day."--Diver "Nonfiction with the trademarks of a novel: the plots and subplots, the tension and suspense . . . Kurson has] found gold."--The Dallas Morning News "Rollicking . . . a fascinating story] about the world of pirates, piracy, and priceless treasures."--The Boston Globe " Kurson's] narration is just as engrossing as the subject."--The Christian Science Monitor "A wild ride and an] extraordinary adventure . . . Kurson's own enthusiasm, combined with his copious research and an eye for detail, makes for one of the most mind-blowing pirate stories of recent memory, one that even the staunchest landlubber will have a hard time putting down."--Publishers Weekly (starred review) "The two contemporary pirate-ship seekers of Mr. Kurson's narrative are as daring, intrepid, tough and talented as Blood and Sparrow--and Bannister. . . . As depicted by the author, they are real-life Hemingway heroes."--The Wall Street Journal " Kurson] takes his knowledge of the underwater world and applies it to the 'Golden Age of Piracy' . . . thrillingly detailing the highs and lows of chasing not just gold and silver but also history."--Booklist "A great thriller full of tough guys and long odds . . . and: It's all true."--Lee Child
In the Heart of the Sea brings to new life the incredible story of the wreck of the whaleship Essex--an event as mythic in its own century as the Titanic disaster in ours, and the inspiration for the climax of Moby-Dick. In a harrowing page-turner, Nathaniel Philbrick restores this epic story to its rightful place in American history.
In 1820, the 240-ton Essex set sail from Nantucket on a routine voyage for whales. Fifteen months later, in the farthest reaches of the South Pacific, it was repeatedly rammed and sunk by an eighty-ton bull sperm whale. Its twenty-man crew, fearing cannibals on the islands to the west, made for the 3,000-mile-distant coast of South America in three tiny boats. During ninety days at sea under horrendous conditions, the survivors clung to life as one by one, they succumbed to hunger, thirst, disease, and fear.
In the Heart of the Sea tells perhaps the greatest sea story ever. Philbrick interweaves his account of this extraordinary ordeal of ordinary men with a wealth of whale lore and with a brilliantly detailed portrait of the lost, unique community of Nantucket whalers. Impeccably researched and beautifully told, the book delivers the ultimate portrait of man against nature, drawing on a remarkable range of archival and modern sources, including a long-lost account by the ship's cabin boy. At once a literary companion and a page-turner that speaks to the same issues of class, race, and man's relationship to nature that permeate the works of Melville, In the Heart of the Sea will endure as a vital work of American history.
This passionate yet balanced narrative explores every facet of the Titanic's history, including her spectacular conception in an Irish shipyard and the ambitious modern-day attempts to salvage her. The familiar story of the RMS Titanic--from her encounter with an iceberg to her demise some three hours later, taking with her more than fifteen hundred people--still looms large in the popular imagination, and in Daniel Butler's as well. He studied the Titanic's history for thirty years, intensively compiling facts about the disaster and the players involved (from Captain Smith and his crew to the ill-fated third-class passengers). He even made the startling discovery of a nearby ship that ignored the Titanic's distress call because the shipmates were afraid to awaken their captain. Drawn from primary sources and period accounts, this new narrative puts the disaster into historical context and serves as an essential resource for scholars of Titanic lore.
Dramatic accounts of shipwrecks and sea adventures from all over the world includes excerpts from such books as "Adrift: Seventy-six days lost at sea" by Steven Callahan and "The Caine mutiny" by Herman Wouk