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Across Islands and Oceans: A Journey Alone Around the World By Sail and By Foot Paperback – January 31, 2012


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Across Islands and Oceans: A Journey Alone Around the World By Sail and By Foot + Breaking Seas: An overweight, middle-aged computer nerd buys his first boat, quits his job, and sails off to adventure + Sailing a Serious Ocean: Sailboats, Storms, Stories and Lessons Learned from 30 Years at Sea
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 376 pages
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (January 31, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1470004615
  • ISBN-13: 978-1470004613
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 6 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (189 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #64,652 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"Baldwin's crisp, clear writing carries the reader forward...the book has a reflective tone as Baldwin examines his own growth during the journey and the many lessons he learned that only the sea can teach." -Practical Sailor Magazine, July 2012

"His tales of the hikes and the people are as fascinating as the stories of his voyages and times at sea. This book is a wonderful addition to anyone's cruising bookshelf and likely to become a classic someday." -Good Old Boat Magazine

"This is the well-crafted story of a young man's voyage of self-discovery coupled with a desire to absorb and learn from the people and cultures he experiences." - Cruising World Magazine, October 2012

More About the Author

Atom's Virtual Homeport at http://www.atomvoyages.com/ contains stories and scenes from over 20 years and two voyages around the world seeking adventure aboard our 28-foot Pearson Triton sailboat, Atom.

Customer Reviews

The best of several sailing books I have read.
tennessee
I really enjoyed this wonderful book, His lovely way of describing the Worlds People that he came across on his amazing journey.
Patsy O'Neill
I liked the book, it was very well written, nice story.
RC

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Triton106 on February 1, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition
I have been waiting for James Baldwin to publish this book for a while. He originally published it one chapter at a time on his own website AtomVoyages.com. I always read each chapter in one sitting and looked forward to the next one.

Although you are reading two reviews by Triton (the same maker and model as the sailboat in James' story) sailors here the book is far more than sailing a small engineless sloop around the world single-handedly in author's youth (the first of two such solo circumnavigations James completed). It's about James' approach to life and his continuous strife to seek out what nature and other cultures have to offer. He writes it in beautiful and simple style that reminds me of the writings of Joshua Slocum and Harry Pidgeon (the first and second sailors to ever solo circumnavigate in history) and, if I dare say, in the tradition of Henry Thoreau. The writing is easy and personable as if you are sitting there listening to the story telling by a skilled novelist.

James has also published many other seafaring short stories and small sailing craft improvement writings on his website. I hope he will find the time to collate them into book form so that they can be collected and not lost.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Jonathan on February 1, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition
I've long enjoyed, learned from and been inspired by James, primarily through his website. This book brings so many of James' experiences, perspectives and wisdom together into an enjoyable read which gave me a much better understanding of his adventures and accomplishments. These accomplishments go well beyond sailing and into his overall approach to life. I look forward to re-reading this soon and hope James, and hopefully Mei, share more in the future.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By PDX Author on August 16, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
James Baldwin not only had a dream to sail the world, he fulfilled it and then some. "Across Islands and Oceans" is a complete account of a sailing adventure and a thoughtful reflection of the explorations that extend beyond the ports of call.

Baldwin not only sailed the oceans alone, enduring storms and torturous encounters with rugged lee shores, he also explored the interior of the islands he visited. His descriptions of landscape and culture and the relationships he forged with locals add a richness to an already adventurous story.

The personalities of sailing's greatest solo sailors are referenced throughout this book. Inspired by Joshua Slocum, Bernard Moitessier, Robin Lee Graham, among a few others, Baldwin worked in a land locked steel foundry to save enough money to finance his travels. His writing is exquisite and contains the thoughtful reflections of one who spends time thinking about the larger context of humanity.

If being transported on an armchair adventure via some good reading is what you are looking for, "Across Islands and Oceans" is sure to satisfy the most discriminating reader. It is by far the best in its genre.
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Jalil Jacallen on June 9, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I've been waiting for this book for a long time, having learned a little about Baldwin's voyages in ATOM by accident while trying to learn more about the intrepid Jean Gau, whose trusty Atkin double-ender was also called ATOM. I can read Moitessier and Slocum over and over again with an undiminished desire, at the last page, to turn right back to the front and start over. Baldwin is a bit more self-involved, and his book is rather more about his exploits than it is about his voyage. I've no regrets about having bought and read the book, and if you have also completely exhausted everything you could find from heroes like Bernard Moitessier, Sir Robin Knox-Johnston, Joshua Slocum, Vito Dumas, and Alain Gerbault, then you'll also be glad you bought Baldwin's book, because you need his amazing and vivid description of St Helena, and you dream about his remarkable hike into the forests of New Guinea. If, however, you are new to sea adventures and looking for some romantic stories of cruising on sailboats, you should absolutely start with Moitessier's "Vagabond of the South Seas". Baldwin is apparently oblivious of the value of the ancient cultures he visits, and sometimes commits acts of selfishness that seriously detract from the beauty of the adventures he describes. It's as off-putting as an American on holiday - which, I suppose, is really what it amounts to. Nevertheless, I've re-read his description of St Helena several times, and was truly captivated by his adventures in the jungle.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By ---- Neil H. on October 15, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This story takes place about 30 years ago, and recounts the authors purchase, outfitting and circumnavigation on a monohull under 30 feet, on a shoestring budget. What makes the book so great, is the authors ability to share his experience on water and on the various islands he stops at. He makes a point to grab his backpack and hike each island, so you get the chance vicariously, to meet the people he meets, and the cultures he finds. Very well written and even though the voyage took place some time ago when the author was in his 20's, it could have taken place today. I think you will enjoy this author, and am curious what he has done since the time the story took place.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Sandy on October 17, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Wish I could have made the voyage. Solo sailors are unuiqe and very determined.

I find it very interesting how little you actually need to cruise.
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