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It seemed like a good idea. Tired of everyday life ashore, Farley Mowat would find a sturdy boat in Newfoundland and roam the salt sea over, free as a bird. What he found was the worst boat in the world, and she nearly drove him mad. The Happy Adventure, despite all that Farley and his Newfoundland helpers could do, leaked like a sieve. Her engine only worked when she felt like it. Typically, on her maiden voyage, with the engine stuck in reverse, she backed out of the harbour under full sail. And she sank, regularly.
How Farley and a varied crew, including the intrepid lady who married him, coaxed the boat from Newfoundland to Lake Ontario is a marvellous story. The encounters with sharks, rum-runners, rum and a host of unforgettable characters on land and sea make this a very funny book for readers of all ages
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FROM RAFT TO RAFT
An Incredible Voyage from Tahiti to Chile and back.
By Bengt Danielsson, Softback, 0.36 kg, 140mm x 210mm, 264 pages. First Published 1960.
Not since the fantastic story of the Kon-Tiki expedition has there appeared such as exciting saga of a primitive raft expedition across the Pacific for scientific investigation. From Raft to Raft tells the incredible, suspenseful drama of the dangerous voyage led by Eric de Bisschop from Tahiti to Chile and back to Polynesia—a foray twice as long as that undertaken by Kon-Tiki and one that encountered infinitely greater difficulties and dangers.
Like Heyerdahl, de Bisschop undertook his voyage to prove an ethnological theory—but a theory completely contrary to that of his Norwegian forerunner. Heyerdahl believed that voyagers from South America had visited Polynesia in prehistoric times; de Bisschop was equally certain that Tahitian sea rovers had traveled as far as Chile and Peru.
After suffering unbelievable hardships during the first half of the voyage, two members of the Tahiti Nui crew abandoned the project, but de Bisschop and Alain Brun, who narrated the story to Bengt Danielsson, continued on their journey, spending thirteen months aboard the most primitive rafts. But despite the inadequacy of their crafts—all of which had a frightening tendency to break up—coupled with the dangers of attacking sharks, mutiny by one of the crew, raging storms, and near-starvation, the Tahiti Nui voyage was completed in record time—but not before a series of dramatic events occurred that were to culminate in tragic death
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SHIPS OF MERCY
The remarkable fleet bringing hope to the World's poorest people.
By Don Stephens, Paperback, 0.19 kg, 128mm x 198mm, 225 pages. Colour Photographs. Published 2018.
The improbable but thrilling story of how a Colorado farm boy built a navy, how a decrepit ocean liner learned to be a hospital, and how a boat load of volunteers are literally changing the face of the world ... one face at a time.
Ships of Mercy tells the riveting true story of Mercy Ships, the astonishing fleet of hospital ships that sail the globe, bringing dramatic change to the lives of hundreds of thousands of people in the most impoverished and disease-stricken corners of the world.
It tells the story of a teenager's extraordinary vision brought to reality in the form of a multi-million dollar life-saving mission. It also tells the story of a family of people from diverse backgrounds who have sacrificed their comfort and security in order to perform remarkable acts of grace and kindness.
Mercy Ships is an international charity which currently operates three hospital vessels: the Anastasis, the Caribbean Mercy and the Island Mercy. These astonishing ships take relief and development to the port cities of some of the world's poorest countries. Every year, Mercy Ships' doctors perform more than a thousand complex operations that transform people's lives - including complicated maxilofacial surgery - in areas where up to half the population has no access to basic health care.
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The True Story of the World's Longest Sea Chase.
By Eskill Engdal & Kjetil Saeter, Paperback, 0.45 kg, 135mm x 210mm, 391 pages. Colour Photographs. Published 2018.
December, 2014: In the forbidding waters off Antarctica, Captain Hammarstedt of the Bob Barker embarks on a voyage unlike any seen before. Across ten thousand miles of hazardous seas, Hammarstedt’s crew will relentlessly pursue the Thunder—an infamous illegal fishing ship—for what will become the longest chase in maritime history.
Wanted by Interpol, the Thunder has for years evaded justice: accumulating millions in profits, hunting endangered species and ruthlessly destroying ocean habitats. The authors follow this incredible expedition from the beginning. But even as seasoned journalists, they cannot anticipate what the chase will uncover, as the wake of the Thunder leads them to trail of criminal kingpins, rampant corruption, modern slavery, and an international community content to turn a blind eye. Very soon, apprehending Thunder becomes more than a chase but a pursuit of the truth itself and a symbolic race to preserve the well-being of our planet.
A Scandinavian best-seller, Catching Thunder is a remarkable true story of courage and perseverance, and a wake-up call to act against the destruction of our environments.
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The Art of Catching a Large Shark from a Tiny Rubber Dinghy in a Big Ocean.
By Morten Stroksnes, Hardback, 0.39 kg, 145mm x 198mm, 307 pages. Published 2017.
The Lofoten islands in Norway are as isolated and forbidding as they are majestic. In this true story, two friends, the author and the eccentric artist Hugo Aasjord, set out onto the icy waters surrounding the islands. Their quest: to pursue the infamous Greenland shark—a massive creature that can grow to twenty-six feet in length and more than a ton in weight—from a tiny rubber boat. But the shark is not known for its size alone: its meat contains a toxin that, when consumed, has been known to make people drunk and hallucinatory. Together, the two men tackle existential questions, survive the world’s most powerful maelstrom, and, yes, get drunk, as they attempt to understand the ocean from every possible angle, drawing on poetry, science, history, ecology, mythology, and their own, sometimes intoxicated, observations.
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OFF THE MAP
By Alastair Bonnett, Paperback, 0.23 kg, 128mm x 198mm, 310 pages. Line drawings. Published 2015.
In this world of Google Earth, it is easy to believe that every discovery has been made and every adventure had. Off the Map is a stunning testament to how mysterious our planet still is. It takes us into uncharted territory, to places found on few maps and sometimes on none.
From forgotten enclaves to floating islands, from hidden villages to new York gutterspaces, Off the Mao charts the hidden corners of our planet. While these are not necessarily places you would choose to visit on holiday – Hobyo, the pirate capital of Somalia, or Zhelznogorsk, a secret military town in Russia – they each carry a story about the strangeness of place, a concept which continues to enthral us in a world that is not quite as exhaustively mapped as it can sometimes appear and continues to hold many secrets.
Off the Map takes us t the ends of the earth to show us some of the most remarkable but least known places on the planet. But it also shows us that topophilia, the love of place, is a fundamental part of what it is to be human.
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ROWING THE PACIFIC
7,000 miles from Japan to San Francisco
By Mick Dawson, Paperback, 0.35 kg, 155mm x 235mm, 275 pages. Published 2017.
Storms, fatigue, equipment failure, intense hunger, and lack of water are just a few of the challenges that ocean rower Mick Dawson endured whilst attempting to complete one of the World's 'Last Great Firsts'.
In this nail-biting true story of man versus nature, former Royal Marine commando Dawson, a Guinness World Record-holder for ocean-rowing and high-seas adventurer takes on the Atlantic and ultimately the North Pacific.
It took Dawson three attempts and a back-breaking voyage of over six months to finally cross the mighty North Pacific for the first time. Dawson and his rowing partner Chris Martin spent 189 days, 10 hours and 55 minutes rowing around the clock, facing the destruction of their small boat and near-certain death every mile of the way, before finally reaching the iconic span of San Francisco's Golden Gate Bridge.
Dawson's thrilling account of his epic adventure details how he and Chris propelled their fragile craft, stroke by stroke for thousands of miles across some of the most dangerous expanses of ocean, overcoming failure, personal tragedy and everything that nature could throw at him along the way.
MICK DAWSON is one of the most experienced and successful ocean rowers in the world. To date, he has spent over 440 days at sea in rowing boats, covering a distance of over 18,000 nautical miles. He is a former Royal Marines commando, who saw active service both in the Falklands War and the Middle East. His lifelong passion for the ocean continued after his time in the Royal Marines when he went on to become a professional sailor and ultimately record-breaking ocean rower.
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DARE TO DO.
Taking on the Planet by Bike and Boat
By Sarah Outen, Paperback, 0.22 kg, 130mm x 198mm, 289 pages. Published 2017. Colour photographs.
On 1 April 2011, rower and adventurer Sarah Outen set off in her kayak from Tower Bridge for France. her aim was simple: to circle the globe entirely under her own steam - cycling, kayaking and rowing across Europe, Asia, the Pacific, North America, the Atlantic and eventually home. A year later, Sarah was plucked from the Pacific ocean after tropical storm Mawar, her boat broken, her spirit even more so.
But that wasn't the end. Despite ill health and depression, giving up was not an option. So Sarah set off once more to finish what she had started, becoming the first woman to row solo from Japan to Alaska, as well as the first woman to row the mid-Pacific from West to East. She kayaked the treacherous Aleutian chain and cycled North America, before setting out on the Atlantic, despite the risk of another row-ending storm.
This is more than an adventure story. It is a story of the kindness of strangers and the spirit of travel; a story of the raw power of nature, of finding love in unexpected places, and of discovering your inner strength. It is about trying and failing, and trying again, and about how, even when all seems lost, you can find yourself.
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THE LAST GREAT AUSTRALIAN ADVENTURER.
Ben Carlin's epic journey around the world by amphibious jeep.
By Gordon Bass, Paperback, 0.55 kg, 154mm x 233mm, 365 pages. Published 2017. Black & White and Full-colour photographs.
In 1948, Ben Carlin set out from New York City with an audacious, lunatic plan to circumnavigate the world in an army surplus amphibious jeep called Half-Safe.
Fuelled by cigarettes and adrenaline, the Australian army major pushed his fragile, claustrophobic vehicle through fierce Atlantic hurricanes, across uncharted North African desert, into dense South-East Asian jungle and over the icy dark swells of the North Pacific. It was a 50,000-mile roll of the dice that by all rights should have killed him. When Ben finally pulled into Times Square a decade later, he found himself alone and forgotten, his legacy little more than a wake of women and empty whiskey bottles. And the worst was yet to come.
Was it all a fool’s errand? Or a pure manifestation of spirit? Where does a dream end and an obsession begin? What’s an acceptable cost to pay, and to what lengths will a person go not to be left with the haunting question: what if? The last Great Australian Adventurer is the compelling account of Ben Carlin’s attempt to make an enduring mark on the world at the twilight of the Golden Age of Adventure
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CAPE HORNERS' CLUB.
Tales of Triumph & Disaster at the World's Most Feared Cape.
By Adrian Flanagan, Hardback, 0.59 kg, 150mm x 235mm, 296 pages. Published 2017. Black & White Images
Cape Horn's fearsome reputation and the price it has extacted from those who venture there derives from a lethal contrivance of geography that unleashes the most powerful natural dynamic forces on the earth's surface. Reaching deep into the Southern Ocean, the Cape intrudes into the flow of the water and weather patterns at the bottom of the world and funnels them into a maritime superhighway a mere 500 miles wide, building massive seas and accelerating wind speeds to hurricane strength. Currents rip at rates that defeat powerful engines.
These legendarily treacherous conditions were enough to secure Cape Horn's reputation as the ultimate in ocean violence; the supreme test of sailors and ships. It is the oceanic equivalent of the climbers' Everest, and the challenge to some became irresistible. The roll call of sailors who have managed to round the Horn east-about (and more rarely, head to wind and west-about) glitters with the names of sailing legends: Vito Dumas, Marcel Bardiaux, Francis Chichester, Robin Knox-Johnston, Bernard Moitessier and Chay Blyth. -
This book recounts the history of the Cape through the stories of the people who've taken it on and made it round – the Cape Horners' Club. From the first recorded single-hander in 1934 (Al Hansen, who was lost shortly afterwards and his body never found), we follow these very different protagonists as they pursue the ultimate goal while battling almost overwhelming odds. Woven through their stories is a history of the Cape, from its discovery to its use as a trading corridor until the opening of the Panama Canal, to its more recent role as a pure challenge for the best yachtsmen and yachtswomen in the world. Changes in weather prediction and navigation have had a huge impact, but the pressure for ever-faster times has never been greater.
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THE SEA AND THE SNOW. How we reached and climbed a volcano at the ends of the earth.
By Phillip Temple, Softback, 0.50 kg, 220mm x 215mm, 232 pages. First Published 1966. This edition revised and updated 2016.
HEARD ISLAND, an improbably remote speck in the far Southern Ocean, lies four thousand kilometres to the south-west of Australia—with Antarctica its nearest continent. By 1964 it had been the object of a number of expeditions, but none reaching the summit of its 9000-foot volcanic peak ‘Big Ben’. In that year Warwick Deacock resolved to rectify this omission, and assembled a party of nine with impressive credentials embracing mountaineering, exploration, science and medicine, plus his own organisation and leadership skills as a former Major in the British Army.
But first they had to get there. Heard has no airstrip and was on no steamer route, the only way was by sea in their own vessel. Approached from Australia, the island lay in the teeth of the prevailing westerlies of the ‘Roaring Forties’and ‘Furious Fifties’ . One name only came to mind as the skipper to navigate them safely to their destination and home again - H W 'Bill' Tilman.
In this first hand account, Phillip Temple invites us all on this superbly conducted, happy and successful expedition, aided by many unpublished photographs by Warwick Deacon. As fresh an account today as it was on its first publication 50 years ago!
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CRUSOE'S ISLAND A Rich and curious history of pirates, castaways and madness.
By Andrew Lambert, Paperback, 0.26 kg, 130mm x 198mm, 306 pages. Paperback Published 2017.
Acclaimed historian Andrew Lambert uncovers the fascinating truth about a faraway place that still haunts our imagination and culture: the island of Robinson Crusoe in the South Pacific Ocean.
Daniel Defoe's enduring novel Robinson Crusoe famously followed the adventures of a shipwrecked sailor. Yet the complex reality is more surprising, more colourful and considerably darker.
Drawing on voyage accounts, journal entries, maps and illustrations, Lambert brings to life the voices of the visiting sailors, scientists, writers and artists. There are the early encounters of the 1500s, the perilous journeys of the eighteenth-century explorers, the naval conflicts of the First World War and the environmental concerns of more recent years.
Crusoe’s Island reveals that the British relationship whit this distant, tiny island extends far beyond a single book. This true history helps us to understand why the British, still a naval power but no longer a great maritime empire, are not yet ready to give up the ocean – or on tiny specks of land at the far ends of the earth.
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By Jack London, Hardback, 0.10 kg, 109mm x 172mm. Originally Published 1912. Reprinted 2014 .
Jack London listened to the lure of the sea and discovered the thrill of sailing a small boat on San Francisco Bay at age 12. He owned several sailboats throughout his life and claimed that he felt more at home on the sea than on land. Originally published in Yachting Monthly magazine in 1912, this essay describes his life spent at sea including the hard work and excitement of sailing a small boat in treacherous waters.
Here is a small excerpt taken from the book....
‘Barring captains and mates of big ships, the small-boat sailor is the real sailor. He knows—he must know—how to make the wind carry his craft from one given point to another given point. He must know about tides and rips and eddies, bar and channel markings, and day and night signals; he must be wise in weather-lore; and he must be sympathetically familiar with the peculiar qualities of his boat which differentiate it from every other boat that was ever built and rigged. He must know how to gentle her about, as one instance of a myriad, and to fill her on the other tack without deadening her way or allowing her to fall off too far.’
A beautifully bound little gift book.
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AMAZING SAILING STORIES
By Dick Durham. 264 pages, 0.40 kg, 153mm x 230mm. Published 2016 .
Discover some of the most exciting tales of adventure afloat.
This is a wonderful collection of sailing stories from across centuries and around the world. Journey around gale-whipped headlands, survive mountainous seas and discover the delights of cruising among the islands of a tropical paradise. From the majestic square rigger to the humble homemade yacht; every sort of vessel is showcased in this treasure trove of extraordinary true tales
The exploits of sailing’s greatest names are recounted, along with an eclectic mix of voyages that never made the headlines yet make compelling reading.
Dick Durham invites you to set sail on a thrilling journey comprising some of the most exciting tales of adventure afloat. He retells each one, adding a magic that makes this essential reading for anyone with a love of sailing and the sea.
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Nicholas was a keen sailor, with several of his posthumously-published writings having a nautical theme. To try to reconnect with this happier memory of his son, Paul decides to set out – alone – on a voyage he would have liked them to have embarked upon together. Cape Horn is the sailor's Everest. One of the most remote and bleak parts of the world, it takes courage, physical strength and mental fortitude to face its tempestuous seas, violent winds and barren landscape.
Poignant, moving, funny, thought provoking and beautifully written, Paul's account of setting his own course through seemingly insurmountable grief makes for a powerful story. Injected with humour, perceptiveness and philosophy, recounting his highs, lows, frustrations and triumphs, the honesty and openness of Paul's story makes this very personal account a universal tale.
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This is their story.
The author, Ben Stewart led the first Greenpeace expedition to challenge Arctic oil drilling off the coast of Greenland. In 2013 he was a leading figure in the campaign to free the Arctic Thirty.
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In 1789 the crew of the HMS Bounty mutinied against their captain, William Bligh. Bligh and his loyal crewmen survived a 1,000-mile journey in a small boat, but when he returned to England and several mutineers went on trial, different versions of the events began to emerge. This brand new edition brings together Bligh's account of the mutiny, responses from the lawyer Edward Christian (the brother of lead mutineer Fletcher Christian) and contridictory testimonies from Bounty crewmembers.
World-class yachtsman and racing sailor Pete Goss writes in the foreword to this edition of his own experience of a collapse in captain-crew relations as he explores the grey areas surrounding the mutiny on the Bounty
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Here, Matt Vance takes you inside the mind of the sailor, from the first scary moment of handling a boat solo to the exhilaration of sailing across oceans and discovering new worlds. His stories and those of his fellow madmen will captivate sailors young and old - and if you're a landlubber you may just find yourself yearning for the blue horizon.
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In his planning for this epic journey, and given his small storage facility, Jeremy thinks very carefully about the packing. With the intention of finding lodging along the way in the many villages. His priority list included maps, iodine tablets, first aid kit, sleeping bag, walking stick (to fend off the infamous Turkish dogs) and a collapsible boat. In hindsight, he thinks he should have included a trowel....
From Turkey's steppe interior to the great port city of Miletus, Jeremy paddles and unpicks the history of this remarkable region. Along the way interacting with a rich assortment of contemporary characters who reveal a rural Turkey on the cusp of change. This is the story of a river that first bought the cultures of East and West into contact, and conflict. Its banks lie littered with the spoils of empires, the marks of war and the detritus of recent industrialisation.
At once epic, intimate and insightful, Meander is a brilliant evocation of a land between two worlds. A quixotic journey down a river and a wonderfully affectionate, funny and knowledgeable portrait of Turkey.
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In 1929 the last great days of commercial sail were passing. During that time Captain Irving Johnson sailed aboard the massive four-masted bark Peking. In this programme he narrates the passage in a style that made him a favourite on the lecture circuit around the world. The most spectacular scenes were filmed during a storm with winds gusting over 100 miles-an-hour as the ship was rounding Cape Horn.
The Peking is preserved at the South Street Seaport Museum in Lower Manhatten, New York, USA. On the internet you can visit her anytime at Southstreetseaportmuseum.
This DVD video must be regarded as a very special artifact of maritime history, as it is one of very few, well executed and preserved films taken aboard merchant sailing ships during an authentic passage. It probably stands alone in that the visual quality is excellent, having regard to its chronology and technology, and it covers an entire port-to-port passage. The narration is from a lecture tour in England in 1980 and the voice-over audio is of good, modern quality.
This film is very certainly a sailor's party-piece and would be an asset in any yachtsman's or yacht-club library.
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The waters of this world have swirled through storytelling ever since the Celts spun the tale of Beowulf and Homer narrated The Odyssey. This enthralling book takes us on a tour of the most dangerous, exciting and often eccentric escapades of literature's sailing stars, and how these true stories inspired and informed their best-loved works. Arthur Ransome, Erskine Childers, Jack London and many others are featured as we find out how extraordinary fact fed into unforgettable fiction. -
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An engrossing narrative of one man’s struggle to achieve his dream against all odds, this is both a fast-paced adventure and a telling commentary on how heroes are often made despite the system they operate in, by dint of sheer perseverance and commitment to a chosen path. Above all, it’s a paean to the power of self-belief that serves to inspire, motivate and exhilarate.
On 19 May 2010, as he sailed INSV Mhadei into Mumbai harbour, Commander Dilip Donde earned his place in India’s maritime history by becoming the first Indian to complete a solo circumnavigation under sail, south of the 3 Great Capes. The feat, successfully completed by just over 200 people in the world, had never been attempted in his country before.
In his own words, the book chronicles his progress over four years, from building a suitable boat with an Indian boat-builder; weaving his way through the ‘sea-blind’ and often quixotic bureaucracy; and training himself with no precedent or knowledge base in the country, to finally sailing solo around the world. During this gruelling task he was mentored by Sir Robin Knox-Johnston, the first man to sail solo non-stop around the world.
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The Southern Ocean is Earth's most notorious body of water.The windiest, roughest most isolated and most important ocean on the planet. It circles Antarctica, acts as a violent mixer of wind and water, links all other oceans, is feared by sailors and explorers – and is mostly ignored by the rest of the world.
Human influence is minimal; the idea of settlement is absurd. There are only widely scattered outposts of people who have come ashore intentionally and temporarily – or have been shipwrecked or abandoned.
Few people visit this remote and mysterious region, but for some, the lure is irresisible. As an expedition guide, Matt Vance has accompanied intrepid tourists and birders, artists and writers.
In Ocean Notorious he gives a moving first-person account of the lonely places where lives have been changed and history made. - from the obsessive explorers of the heroic era to solo sailors in tiny yachts, marooned wartime coastwatchers and ruthless plunderers of wildlife to today's dreamers, drifters and passionate preservationists.
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By Arthur Ransome. Paperback, 053 kgs, 150mm x 235mm, 255 pages. Published 2015
This new edition of Racundra's First Cruise includes the original maps, text and photographs from the 1923 edition, of which only 1500 copies were printed. The book was reprinted many times in various editions and formats but never in its original form. There is an extended introduction, which includes details of Ransome's previous Baltic sailing, the story of Racundra, how he came to write the book, and previously unpublished Ransome essays and photographs.
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By Arthur Ransome. Hardcover, 159mm x 242mm, 127 pages.
Here is his Thrid Cruise, written shortly after his second marriage to Evgenia Shelepina at the British Consulate in Tallinn. Their honeymoon cruise was "in the lower reaches of the Dvina, up and down Aa and up Bolderaa to that fascinating, mysterious, romantic and claustrophobic maze of shallow narrow channels winding between enormously tall and strong reeds for what feels like thousands of square miles."
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By Julian Evans. Paperback, 140mm x 218mm, 373 pages. Reprinted 2014
From Marco Polo, Magellan, and Captain Cook to James Michener and Rodgers and Hammerstein, the South Pacific has exercised a profound influence on the Western imagination. It conjures dreams of Marco Polo's illusory kingdoms, the Noble Savage as imagined by the West, the guilt-free sex and gin-clear lagoons of Polynesia, the perfection of idleness on desert islands, Mutiny on the Bounty and the contention between Captain Bligh and Fletcher Christian. Since Captain Cook first traveled to Tahiti to observe the transit of Venus across the sun, fabulae about the South Seas have enabled the Western mind to imagine itself vis-a-vis the Other.
With humor and honesty, Evans uncovers the modern reality and journeys deep into a world of gin-clear lagoons, palms, and sand, in search of both remnants of the fabulous kingdoms of the nineteenth-century European imagination and the truth of the modern twentieth century.
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