Thursday, November 9, 2017

Good Reads: Alone At Sea. The Adventures of Joshua Slocum

One of the first old books I acquired decades ago when I moved to Kingston was Joshua Slocum's Sailing Alone Around the World.  First published in 1900, the book recounted his 46,000 mile solitary voyage around the world between 1895 and 1898 in the sloop "Spray" that he rebuilt from a derelict vessel.  It's an amazing story, and the book was a best-seller at the time.

Last year I chanced upon Ann Spencer's book, which was published by Doubleday Canada in 1998.  Following exhaustive research, she does an admirable job of throwing light on this master shipwright and sailor, following his career from his youth in Brier Island, Nova Scotia to his decline and disappearance in 1908 or 1909.  (Curiously, no one is sure of the exact year.)  Slocum was one of the last of the die-hard sailing ship captains, who absolutely refused to accept the coming of steam.

Below, from Spencer's book:

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