Thursday, November 4, 2010

an ocean of stories

I live near the edge of the Atlantic Ocean, enjoy it, and visit it routinely. In fact I spent this morning on the beach of Hatteras Island watching the waves roll in from the ocean. But I have never quite thought of the Atlantic in the scale and scope of Simon Winchester's new book "Atlantic, Great Sea Battles, Heroic Discoveries, Titanic Storms, and a Vast Ocean of a Million Stories." The title says it all. I can't wait to read it.

I've been a fan of the author's since I read two of his other books - Krakatoa: The Day the World Exploded: August 27, 1883 and Outposts: Journeys to the Surviving Relics of the British Empire. Both books are history books, written in an entertaining and informative style. I can only guess this new book will be just as good.

With a long winter nights plus a couple of cross country flights in my future I've been looking for some fresh reading material. "Atlantic" is on the list. And so is "Skeletons for Sadness" by Ewen Southby-Tailyour. The US Amazon site has no reviews, but the UK version of Amazon has a couple including one that describes it as a modern day Riddle of the Sands that takes place during the Falklands war. Riddle of the Sands is one of my favorite books, I did a post about it not too long ago. And I remember following the Falklands War in the news, but never quite understood it. (The author charted the waters around the Falkland Island prior to the war and then served with British forces during the war.) So this book has my attention too.

And a third book, one that I'll have to wait on for a while, is Ferenc Máté's "Sea of Lost Dreams." This is the second book in Mate's Dugger/Nello series. I read the first, "Ghost Sea", a few years ago and just finished re-reading it a couple of weeks ago. "Dugger" is S. V. Dugger, the classic anti-hero/adventurer (and sailor) that gets caught up in the middle of trouble. Ghost Sea takes place in the Pacific Northwest. Sea of Lost Dreams, when it is published next spring, will take place in the South Seas. Light reading for sure, but entertaining stories with great descriptions of sailing. (Since this book comes out in April it may well be evening reading material for the next cruise on Spartina.)

If weather holds this weekend I'll get one more sail in this year. After that all my sailing will be armchair sailing, done with a good book in my hands.



Baydog said...

A teenager during the Falklands?
You youngster.

Steve said...

Oops. You got me there. I was incorrect when I said teenager. I would have also been incorrect if I said mathematician. I was a bit lost in my teens, and a bit lost in my twenties. I got confused.

michael b said...

Don't miss a beat do you Baydog?

Steve said...

...add to Baydog's resumé - historian, mathematician, fact checker.....