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Moitessier: A Sailing Legend Paperback – August 1, 2005

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Editorial Reviews


Moitessier, a Sailing Legend is immensely readable and like any good story about the sea it is full of surprises and twists (Sailing)

A sailor, storyteller, lecturer and tormented soul, Moitessier reveals his life's voyage in this compelling book.
(The Ensign)

This affectionate portrait brings out all the talents and conflicts in its subject, a man of great enthusiasms, a man who cared passionately about people and the environment and who never succumbed to complacency or apathy. (The Sea Chest)

From the Publisher

A review by Les Weatheritt, author of Atlantic Crossings: A Sailor's Guide to Europe and Beyond and Caribbean Passagemaking

It is the best book I've read on Moitessier (and as owners of a Joshua we read all we can get our hands on) and a stunningly good read in its own right.

Barrault manages to respect the philosopher/poet in Moitessier but what he really does justice to is Moitessier the man of action. It was good to be reminded of just how much action there was in the life, and how unstoppable the man could be, since somehow this could be devalued and slip from view in Moitessier's own writing. I love that wonderful moment when Barrault openly despairs at Moitessier's hippy years and gets snappy with Bernard for wasting his talents. This obviously comes out of a long and deep friendship between the two, hence the clear rejoicing by Barrault when Bernard recovers to become his own man again and get back to sailing.

It is clear from this book why Moitessier became a guru in his own lifetime but what Barrault does (more than Moitessier himself can) is to make Moitessier an inspiration to today's sailors. I don't regret reading all those books by Bernard but I wish I'd read this one by Barrault years ago when I was seriously considering going into the Pacific.

And the translation is first rate. I wonder - did Barrault write such a clear and elegant text in the original French or is it really just a feature of the English version?


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Sheridan House; illustrated edition edition (August 1, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1574092049
  • ISBN-13: 978-1574092042
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 6.3 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,345,198 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By C. Newton on August 13, 2008
Format: Paperback
This book is a curious survey--Barrault spends more than half of the book summarizing events as depicted in Moitessier's books. The result compresses the journeys and Moitesseir's psychological experience and elaborates over the perspective of the author: correspondence with Moitessier, the role of the press in Moitessier's life, and the subject's last few years on the sea. It didn't slake my thirst, but did direct me within Moitessier's own body of work.
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Moitessier: A Sailing Legend
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