- Paperback: 248 pages
- Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company (June 29, 2009)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0393337014
- ISBN-13: 978-0393337013
- Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.7 x 8.3 inches
- Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars See all reviews (1,055 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #19,787 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Perfect Storm: A True Story of Men Against the Sea
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The unabridged audio version of Sebastian Junger's The Perfect Storm, read by Richard M. Davidson, moves in the same haunting fashion as the deadly storm referenced in the title. Opening slowly, the story lulls you with a false sense of calm, behind which looms an inexorable power. Almost imperceptibly the drama begins to build and before you know what's hit you, the sheer force of the cumulative events has swept you into a maelstrom of tragic human consequence.
Junger's carefully researched and sympathetic book is a mesmerizing chronicle of man's struggle against nature. Davidson's unassuming, slightly nasal tone subtly captures the drollery of the salty New England attitude. "People often get premonitions when they do jobs that could get them killed ... the trick is knowing when to listen to them." He makes listening to The Perfect Storm seem like you're bearing witness to a natural disaster. You're powerless to help, but the awesome spectacle has such an emotional hold that it's nearly impossible to turn away. Start this tape too late in the evening and you may be in for a dark and stormy night. (Running time: nine hours, six cassettes) --George Laney --This text refers to the Audio Cassette edition.
From School Library Journal
The powerfully destructive forces of nature that created the Halloween Gale of 1991 are made vivid through interviews with survivors, families, and Coast Guard rescue crews.True adventure at its best
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Audio Cassette edition.
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Top Customer Reviews
While the book and the movie differ (from little things like The Crow's Nest doesn't back up to the harbor to large things like the movie's speculation of what went on on-board the Andrea Gail), if you enjoy one of them you will enjoy the other. I watched the movie again shortly after finishing the book just for comparison.
For anyone who enjoys non-fiction books about people facing tremendous odds against nature such as climbing the huge mountains such as Everest or through-walking the Appalachian Trial, this would be a good book for you to try. As in most situations like this, each individual decision isn't necessarily bad or wrong, but when taken as a whole the results can be catastrophic.
It also gives the reader a better understanding of the lives of the commercial fisherman on the eastern seaboard. While it is often romanticized, it is actually a very hard life with lots of grueling work that contains a lot of danger for both life and limb.
I enjoyed the book tremendously and I am sure I will re-read it in the future. Even my husband (who isn't a big reader) found himself fascinated with it.
Putting that aside, and talking strictly about the book, I would say that it is sitting around 3.5 to 4 stars. Especially until we get half way through it, is probably a two star book. It takes some considerable effort to go through the first half of the book.
As far as the story of the Andrea Gail is concerned, it was a little bit frustrating that it was supposed to be factual, but then you realize that we have no idea about what happened, and that everything is pretty much a guess. Accidents can be really interesting and complicated, but they can also be simple and, unfortunately, stupid. Sometimes, when we have rigid data, we are able to tell, and sometimes, as in the case of Andrea Gail, we will never be able to know. We can lay down four million different scenarios, and we will still probably not get close to what really happened.
Things drastically change when we get on the other stories. The book picks up speed there, and it gets compelling, and hard to put down.
All in all, an interesting book to read, but it wouldn't be one of my top priorities. I did like the simple language of it, and the fact that most of the time I didn't feel that pressure of "let me mesmerize you, my dear reader, with the awesomeness of my vocabulary, and how I can lay down sentences that will give you no clue about what I am describing."
I do feel that 4 stars are a little higher than what I would like to rate it, but 3 stars wouldn't do it a lot of justice either,... So 4 stars it is.