|From Ocean Navigator #131 |
MacArthur opens the book with an emotional narrative describing her approach to the Nouch Sud buoy that marked the finish of the VendÃ©e Globe off the coast of France. What is made clear by the passage is her genuine concern for the boat, Kingfisher, which is built of a sleek composite of glues and plastics and carbon and is at first glance perhaps one of the least lovable objects afloat. Yet it was this doting quality – she refers to herself and the boat as “we” – that carried through the book and, combined with apparently inexhaustible tenacity and skill, resulted in her impressive finish of the race. (She holds the second-fastest solo circumnavigation record.) MacArthur has turned what may have otherwise been dull material – sailing around the world is well-tilled ground – into a unique book full of wit and grit, an engrossing story of the call of the sea and survival against profound odds.
International Marine/McGraw Hill, Camden, Maine; 350 pages; $24.95.