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The Perfect Storm: A True Story of Men…

The Perfect Storm: A True Story of Men Against the Sea (P.S.) (original 1997; edition 2007)

by Sebastian Junger

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4,426751,107 (3.88)153
Title:The Perfect Storm: A True Story of Men Against the Sea (P.S.)
Authors:Sebastian Junger
Info:Harper Perennial (2007), Paperback, 272 pages
Collections:Your library

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The Perfect Storm: A True Story of Men against the Sea by Sebastian Junger (1997)


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English (72)  German (1)  French (1)  Dutch (1)  All languages (75)
Showing 1-5 of 72 (next | show all)
a interesting book and was turned into a movie ( )
  KimSalyers | Oct 6, 2016 |
This is a true story, written by a journalist, of a large storm in 1991, and tells the tale of the people, and fishing ships caught up in the storm.

If you consider reading this book, I would first consider this point; do you know anything about fishing and boats? If the answer is yes, then by all means continue and pick up the book. If your answer is not really, as was mine, then I advise caution.

This book is filled with fishing and boating jargon, I couldn't make head nor tail of most of it, and skipped a good few pages trying to reach the story. The beginning of the story is very slow, the author gives the reader a lot of background knowledge about the history of fishing, and how a fishing vessle works. This may be interesting to some, but I found it quite boring, and confusing.

The main focus of the novel is on a ship called The Andrea Gail, which becomes caught in the centre of this storm.

Once you get past the slow beginning, the story does pick up. We follow the fate of a helicopter sent out to rescue fishermen, as well as The Andrea Gail and her crew. The author gives a very detailed description of what it's like to drown, which was interesting to read, but also a little scary.

Overall I thought this novel was ok, but I wouldn't read it again. I would recommend it if you have knowledge of fishing because this will enhance your reading. ( )
  ACascadeofBooks | Oct 5, 2016 |
a interesting book and was turned into a movie ( )
  KimSalyers | Oct 2, 2016 |
I tried. I tried so hard but I just can't get into this book at all.
  amcheri | Aug 22, 2016 |
Richard Davidson did a good job narrating this nonfiction book. However, I found that I had difficulty keeping track of what was being told in audiobook (because my auditory memory is not as good as my visual one). I rewound and relistened to several parts because of that & eventually got a print edition from the library to skim while listening -- that combination worked well for me.

Because of this difficulty I would say the audiobook was 3.5 stars but an extra ½ star was added due to the added value of the author interview included at the end of the book (which was fascinating).

I had already seen the 2000 film based on this book. At first I felt that Junger jumped around too much with the information and anecdotes he was relating and preferred the film's more linear story. However, by the end I realized that the book was a more layered, multifaceted experience and Junger's style (which worked much better for me in print than in audio) fit the amalgamation of science, local color and anecdotes.

After I finished the book, I rewatched the movie with George Clooney. Having just read the book, the movie ended up making me mad -- it was a much fictionalized version which took events that happened in history or to other fishermen and assigned them to the crew of the Andrea Gail such as the attempted rescue by helicopter (which was for another boat entirely!). It also made some significant alterations to the mood of the story by emphasizing captain Billy Tynes' supposed 'run of bad luck' (never once mentioned in the book) and strongly implying that Tynes was responsible for the loss of the ship and portraying the crew as being at odds (also never mentioned in the book). The events were also compressed in time -- I can see that these changes made for a more emotional & dramatic movie but having now read the book, it bothered me that the story told isn't the right one! ( )
  leslie.98 | Jul 25, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 72 (next | show all)
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Sebastian Jungerprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Davidson, Richard M.Narratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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It's no fish ye're buying, it's men's lives.
- Sir Walter Scott, The Antiquary, Chapter 11
This book is dedicated to my father, who first introduced me to the sea.
First words
One midwinter day off the coast of Massachusetts, the crew of a mackerel schooner spotted a bottle with a note in it.
The two vessels pass by each other without a word or a sign, unable to communicate, unable to help each other, navigating their own courses through hell.
Meteorologists see perfection in strange things, and the meshing of three completely independent weather systems to form a hundred-year event is one of them. My God, thought Case, this is the perfect storm. As a result of this horrible alignment, the bulk of the sword fleet – way out by the Flemish Cap – is spared the brunt of the storm, while everyone closer to shore gets pummeled.
People who work on boats have a hard time resisting the idea that certain ones among them are marked, and that they will be reclaimed by the sea. The spitting image of a man who drowned is a good candidate for that; so are all his shipmates. Jonah, of course, was marked, and his shipmates knew it. Murph was marked and told his mother so. Adam Randall was marked but had no idea; as far as he was concerned, he just had a couple of close-calls. After the Andrea Gail went down e told his girlfriend, Chris Hansen, that while he was walking around on board he felt a cold wind on his skin and realized that no one on the crew was coming back. He didn't say anything to them, though, because on the waterfront that isn't done – you don't just tell six men you think they're going to drown. Everyone takes their chance,s and either you drown or you don't.
Anyone who has been through a severe storm at sea has, to one degree or another, almost died, and that fact will continue to alter them long after the winds have stopped blowing and the waves have died down. Like a war or a great fire, the effects of a storm go rippling outward through webs of people for years, even generations. It breaches lives like coastlines and nothing is ever again the same.
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Book description
With its nail-biting suspense and nonstop action, The Perfect Storm has the makings of a superb thriller. But this story of a once-in-a-century meterological occurence, the lives it changes, and the lives it claimed is achingly real. Junger's account of the fate of a group of swordfishermen battling a storm off the Newfoundland coast opens a door into the world of commercial fishing, historically among the most dangerous of occupations. Junger reveals how a finite supply of fish forces boats farther out to sea, and in increasingly hazardous conditions. He explains the unique set of circumstances that led to a storm of unpredictable strength and how even the most advanced technology cannot warn of prepare us for the whims of nature. And he shows us the sea in all its power: the gray horizon at dawn; the maelstrom of wind, water, and rain that make up a nor'easter; and the precise structure of a tidal wave the size of an office building as it curves and falls, playing havoc with any ship that dares to cross its path.
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 006101351X, Mass Market Paperback)

Meteorologists called the storm that hit North America's eastern seaboard in October 1991 a "perfect storm" because of the rare combination of factors that created it. For everyone else, it was perfect hell. In The Perfect Storm, author Sebastian Junger conjures for the reader the meteorological conditions that created the "storm of the century" and the impact the storm had on many of the people caught in it. Chief among these are the six crew members of the swordfish boat the Andrea Gail, all of whom were lost 500 miles from home beneath roiling seas and high waves. Working from published material, radio dialogues, eyewitness accounts, and the experiences of people who have survived similar events, Junger attempts to re-create the last moments of the Andrea Gail as well as the perilous high-seas rescues of other victims of the storm.

Like a Greek drama, The Perfect Storm builds slowly and inexorably to its tragic climax. The book weaves the history of the fishing industry and the science of predicting storms into the quotidian lives of those aboard the Andrea Gail and of others who would soon find themselves in the fury of the storm. Junger does a remarkable job of explaining a convergence of meteorological and human events in terms that make them both comprehensible and unforgettable.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:17:18 -0400)

(see all 7 descriptions)

The incredible true account of the most extraordinary storm of the 20th century, this is the story of a tempest born from so rare a combination of factors it was deemed "perfect" and of the doomed fishing boat with her crew of six that was helpless in the midst of a force beyond comprehension. October 1991. It was "the perfect storm"--a tempest that may happen only once in a century--a nor'easter created by so rare a combination of factors that it could not possibly have been worse. Creating waves ten stories high and winds of 120 miles an hour, the storm whipped the sea to inconceivable levels few people on Earth have ever witnessed. Few, except the six-man crew of the Andrea Gail, a commercial fishing boat tragically headed towards its hellish center.… (more)

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W.W. Norton

2 editions of this book were published by W.W. Norton.

Editions: 039304016X, 0393337014

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An edition of this book was published by Recorded Books.

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