18:31 minutes (8.89 MB)
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Tougias, who with Ten Hours until Dawn (2005) rivaled Sebastian Junger (The Perfect Storm, 1997) in the telling of harrowing experiences at sea, returns with the tale of the yachts Almeisan and At Ease. Caught in a vast storm off the East Coast in spring 2005, the two experienced sailors aboard Almeisan were washed overboard. The captain died, but his first mate survived, thanks to a Filipino merchant ship, and the Almeisan’s three working passengers fast-learned enough seamanship to last until the Coast Guard arrived. The crew of At Ease all survived, but their ordeal was only slightly less harrowing, and the descriptions of it are quite as vivid. Tougias has a knack for getting those who go down to the sea in ships (or, sometimes, nearly under it in yachts) to talk to him and for weaving thoroughly absorbing sea stories out of what they disclose to him. Maritime history and adventure fans need this one.