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?