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Unsinkable: A Young Woman's Courageous Battle on the High Seas Hardcover – April 12, 2011

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Unsinkable: A Young Woman's Courageous Battle on the High Seas + True Spirit: The True Story of a 16-Year-Old Australian Who Sailed Solo, Nonstop, and Unassisted Around the World
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Thomas Nelson; First American Edition edition (April 12, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1400203082
  • ISBN-13: 978-1400203086
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 6.1 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (126 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #130,636 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Abby Sunderland is the second of eight children in a family of sailors and adventurers. In 2007, at age 13, Abby discovered her dream of sailing solo around the world and was inspired by her brother Zac's successful circumnavigation in 2009. Her own journey, in 2010, ended in the Indian Ocean when a rogue wave rolled her sailboat, Wild Eyes. Abby now shares her story of tenacity and courage to audiences everywhere.

Lynn Vincent is the New York Times best-selling writer of Heaven Is for Real and Same Kind of Different As Me. The author or coauthor of ten books, Lynn has sold 12 million copies since 2006. She worked for eleven years as a writer and editor at the national news biweekly WORLD magazine and is a U.S. Navy veteran.

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Customer Reviews

The book is very well written and moves at a very rapid pace.
Thad Bergmeier
This was a great story about one young woman and her family's faith, strength, and perseverance in the face of unbelievable odds.
Shari Dodd
Reading this book is like you are right there in the boat with Abby discovering all the same things and feelings that she did.
Books are Wonderful

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

15 of 18 people found the following review helpful By K. Polzin on June 3, 2011
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
I have a read a lot of non-fiction about people on incredible adventurous journeys and was captivated by the story. The story itself is impressive of a 16-year old and her attempt to sail unassisted and non-stop around the globe.

The sailing jargon would make this a better read for seasoned sailors however. The writers often make an attempt to explain the terminology but using other sailing lingo making it not as enjoyable of a read for a layperson. I think other similar genre books have done a better job at allowing the reader to experience the intensity and the situations.

It's written from 3 different perspectives which was an interesting choice. One was Abby's voice and it reflects the language of a teenager with it's "likes", "kind ofs" and "whatevers" but it does have an earnestness to it. The narrator's perspective, Lynn Vincent, is not very well-written with a lot of areas that read like a book report on historical subjects. The third is from the rescuer participants' perspective.

The biggest message that comes across in the book is that the family was heavily critiqued for allowing their daughter to make the trip and the book seems to be written in a very defensive mode to explain their side of the story. They repeatedly and blatantly cover several points - teenagers should experience life vs watching it on TV, that some teenagers are mature and that they were never interested in making money off of these adventures (both Abby and their son Zac's solo circumnavigation). It is so often repeated messaging that it leads one to think "thou does protest too much.
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41 of 56 people found the following review helpful By G. Twomey on April 26, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
OK, so I just got through the Abby Sunderland book.
Its only 199 pages so its a quick read.

To understand this book, you really need to be a sailor,
otherwise you will be in the glossary for definitions and
information on what is being talked about all the time.

Background - I am an experienced sailor of about 30 years,
and also an electrical engineer with a good amount of experience
in marine electronics. I was an outside observer during the voyage
described in this book, and contacted the Sunderland family when it
became evident that they had serious technical problems.
Suggestions made for safety were ignored and the outcome
of systems failing (as described in the book) was the result.
I was NOT part of "Team Abby" as described in the book.

Lynn Vincent did the writing, she's a ghost writer
who is best known for writing Sarah Palin's books.
Ms. Vincent is actually a good writer and knows how
to put a story together. Factuality and accuracy
are another question. However, she can only write
about what she's told.

In quick summary:
The book is a mixture of fiction, fact and selective
storytelling. When I say "selective" a lot of
things that were "conveniently ignored" made the
story slanted away from all the dangerous stupidity
that occurred along the way.

This is not surprising, considering Facebook postings
and the blog associated with the voyage were rigidly censored
to remove the commentary coming from knowledgable sailors
who warned of issues that threatened
the safety of Abby Sunderland.

Considering members of the Sunderland family have been
called out on national television for being deceptive.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By A. Burke VINE VOICE on July 10, 2011
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Before reading Unsinkable, I had never heard of Abby Sunderland. Though the book speaks of a media circus surrounding her attempt to break a record for the youngest unassisted, non-stop circumnavigation in a sailboat, I missed the entire affair. Still Abby's story, involving an accident and subsequent rescue in the middle of the Indian ocean, makes for some naturally exciting reading. That being said, the problem with this book isn't the story, it's the writing.

The book is broken up into three different perspectives: Abby's voice, her rescue crew, and a generic third-person which mostly focuses on her family. It's an interesting way to tell a story, but it ends up being a bit clunky - especially near the end when perspectives switch every few paragraphs. Of course, Abby's first-hand account is always the most interesting while the generic third-person perspective is dreadful. Not only do you get beaten over the head with religion, but it goes on and on and on about the "critics."

This is perhaps the most frustrating part of Unsinkable. It's attitude toward the the "critics" comes across as defensive when, in the end, they seem to have been mostly right. Given that she almost died (at least) a couple of times during the journey, you would think the book would be a little deferential to her critics, but instead they are mostly painted as devils.

It would have been nice to get to know Abby a bit more. Was she afraid on her voyage? Did she have regrets? And what was the pressure like? We get a taste of this, but the book gets sidetracked too often. If we're not hearing about those mean critics, then we're getting brief history lessons or definitions of words like "Skype" or stories about how God sent angels to untangle a rope. Frankly, it gets tiresome.
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