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Into the Raging Sea: Thirty-Three Mariners, One Megastorm, and the Sinking of El Faro (英語) ペーパーバック – 2019/5/14
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ONE OF JANET MASLIN’S MUST-READ BOOKS OF THE SUMMER
A NEW YORK TIMES EDITOR'S CHOICE
ONE OF OUTSIDE MAGAZINE’S BEST BOOKS OF THE SUMMER
ONE OF AMAZON'S BEST NONFICTION BOOKS OF THE YEAR SO FAR
“A powerful and affecting story, beautifully handled by Slade, a journalist who clearly knows ships and the sea.”—Douglas Preston, New York Times Book Review
“A Perfect Storm for a new generation.”
—Ben Mezrich, bestselling author of The Accidental Billionaires: The Founding of Facebook
On October 1, 2015, Hurricane Joaquin barreled into the Bermuda Triangle and swallowed the container ship El Faro whole, resulting in the worst American shipping disaster in thirty-five years. No one could fathom how a vessel equipped with satellite communications, a sophisticated navigation system, and cutting-edge weather forecasting could suddenly vanish—until now.
Relying on hundreds of exclusive interviews with family members and maritime experts, as well as the words of the crew members themselves—whose conversations were captured by the ship’s data recorder—journalist Rachel Slade unravels the mystery of the sinking of El Faro. As she recounts the final twenty-four hours onboard, Slade vividly depicts the officers’ anguish and fear as they struggled to carry out Captain Michael Davidson’s increasingly bizarre commands, which, they knew, would steer them straight into the eye of the storm. Taking a hard look at America's aging merchant marine fleet, Slade also reveals the truth about modern shipping—a cut-throat industry plagued by razor-thin profits and ever more violent hurricanes fueled by global warming.
A richly reported account of a singular tragedy, Into the Raging Sea takes us into the heart of an age-old American industry, casting new light on the hardworking men and women who paid the ultimate price in the name of profit.
“For sheer drama on the water, it’s hard to beat the tragedy recounted in Rachel Slade’s Into the Raging Sea. . . . a fast-moving cinematic adventure. But for all of the drama, the worst scares are in the epilogue. This sinking was no simple accident.” (Janet Maslin, New York Times)
“A powerful and affecting story, beautifully handled by Slade, a journalist who clearly knows ships and the sea.” (Douglas Preston, New York Times Book Review)
“Riveting.” (Sam Sifton, New York Times “Tastes of Summer”)
“A sea disaster tale unlike any other . . . an exciting, terrifying, and deeply sad story.” (Gilbert Cruz, New York Times Book Review “New & Noteworthy”)
“Harrowing, moving...a taut adventure tale...The depth of research and reporting, and Slade’s skill at pacing and selecting the telling details produce a richly detailed narrative, tense and sad and true.” (Boston Globe)
“More than the story of how a ship was overcome by a storm, Into The Raging Sea is an allegory for what it means to be a part of the nation’s largely invisible working and middle class.” (Longreads)
“Riveting.” (Entertainment Weekly, “Complete Father’s Day Book Gift Guide”)
“With skillful narrative prose and sensitivity, Slade takes readers on the final voyage of the El Faro . . . provid[ing] a haunting intimacy to this maritime disaster.” (Booklist)
“Intimate, eerie, and gripping.” (Outside, “Best Summer Books”)
“An exhaustive account of what happens when tragedy claims a vicious price for our progress and greed. Slade’s book is a chance to name . . . and call to the fore the forces that robbed these mariners of their lives.” (Paste Magazine)
Obviously the author has researched all sorts of things, including US maritime history going back to the 17th century, and much of it is illuminating. But in books like this, narrative pace is everything--and with so many historical vignettes interrupting the core story, the tension and gallop that, given the plot elements, should be generated never quite materialize. it,s a case of too often arbitrary erudition strangling the suspense
At one-half the length the book would be twice as effective.
The opinions regarding global warming/climate change, deregulation, corporate corruption, federal funding, unions and the Jones Act (albeit supported by opinions from like-thinking individuals) detract from that story. Like it or not, the bottom line to this catastrophe was that the people primarily responsible for their safety - the crew themselves - failed to do that. It may seem cold but the prudent mariner does everything he/she can to avoid having their safety rely on someone else. Not all of them were in a position to change this outcome, but the ones that were failed and the rest suffered the consequences with them. Ms. Slade seems to believe that increased regulation, inspection and written standards would prevent incidents like this - she may be right but those actions will have consequences as well. In the end you can't account for "stupid"...see "COSTA CONCORDIA" for example.
The basic story here is excellent and worth reading - far better than wading through the 500 page VDR transcript. Some interpolation was necessary, but in my opinion Ms. Slade went too far.
The only drawback is that everything has to be politicised these days, so the author, has to put in a reference to Trump. Apparently he has white supremacist leanings. It's one thing to speak for the dead, but another to claim you can read someone's mind. I can't subtract half a point, so that's why a point goes. Stop the politicising. Blame the politician who is responsible or who does well, but I'm sick and tired of blaming whoever the current US president is for the ills of the past. I strongly suggest the publisher removes this from the next edition.