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Desperate Journeys, Abandoned Souls: True Stories of Castaways and Other Survivors Paperback – March 15, 1998
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Copyright 1988 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top Customer Reviews
This is a superb mix of 20+ different types of survival stories. From the Poor Englishman who landed on a barren isle that "had neither springs nor streams and was utterly devoid of vegetation: no grass, plants, or trees" and managed to live for a full year and be rescued -to- The Headhunter's Casket, which in part reads, "...two issues should be examined and resolved. The first involves an individual's responsibility or guilt for actions taken to ensure his survival. The second has to do with the lasting effects of ordeals." It is truely some of the best reading and information, of this type, I've EVER come across.
The one thing each of the stories has in common is that each of the survivors not only had to withstand the tragedy itself, but then they had to fight against nature or the elements to preserve their life.
I did enjoy the book, but I can't give it more than 3 stars. I generally judge a book by how difficult it is for me to set it down before it's finished--this one just wasn't that gripping. The stories were interesting, but at times it didn't seem like there was enough continuity.
In addition, I think the last chapter could have been eliminated entirely. While the other chapters were generally dedicated to one story per chapter, the last contained a dozen or so stories from the 20th century. As a result, they were much more brief, and left me wondering about the details that were necessarily omited.
That said however, the author did a fantastic job of researching the accounts, especially given the number he covered.
Selected here events (on the land and sea) are absolutely astonishing and ranging in time from 16th century to modern times. Tragedy of whale ship "Essex" is included.
Great research and great writing Mr. Leslie, I congratulate you for this !
After reading this, I had this strange period of looking at the world from the point of view of a castaway... "what is useful to me in this situation? What can be salvaged here?", which was interesting, to say the least. Any book that gives you a new way to think deserves 5 stars!
Most Recent Customer Reviews
From someone who has over 40 books on human survival I can tell you this book is a keeper ! The author goes into little known stories and does a very thorough analysis of the... Read morePublished 11 months ago by James Livingstone
This is one of those books that I look forward to reading. It is written well. And the stories easy to imagine. Read morePublished 12 months ago by Amazonjunkie
Unputdownable. Simply the best of the best of survival tales... or, in at least half of them, not survival tales. Read morePublished 20 months ago by Rodney J. Szasz
if you've ever wondered what happens to people when they fall off the face of the earth this book finds them, lets you know the kind of desperate circumstances they survived or did... Read morePublished 24 months ago by will crow
Riveting. A good read. Well researched and well presented/written. Nice book to nibble on; not... for me at least... a one-sitting, read through kind of book.Published on February 20, 2014 by R. W. Hardy
This author has an almost religious reverence for the sublime in human culture. That being the case, he really shouldn't have undertaken to write a book about survival stories... Read morePublished on December 14, 2013 by S. Clark