See also Shipwrecks and Maritime Disasters

  • Alone In The Tasman
  • Off the Deep End
  • A Speck In The Sea
  • 438 Days
  • No Mercy
  • Hell on High Seas
  • Intrepid Voyagers
  • Sunk Without Trace
  • Once is Enough
  • Total Loss
  • On the Edge of Survival
  • Suddenly Overboard
  • 117 Days Adrift

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    Tony Allan's true Story of Survival at sea.
    By Tony Allan & Les Hill. Paperback, 154mm x 235mm, 160 pages. Published 2018. 0.26 kg

    On 27 December 1974, Tony Allan, a solo sailor on board his Trimaran Rebel II, left Queensland on a return journey to New Zealand. Two days later at 5.45 am, chaos erupted. In seconds, Tony's yacht was inexplicably uplifted and turned end over end onto its cabin roof. Tony was thrown out of his berth with debris raining down on him. The yacht's interior was flooded by a huge wall of water.
    At that moment he had no idea that he would have to survive for twenty challenging days in a tiny life raft.
    Miraculously he was sighted by an Officer on the Khian Star, a cargo ship, and was rescued.

    This is a gripping and true story of one man's enormous courage and mental will to survive that shows the inner strength possessed by a man thrust into extremely difficult circumstances.

    NZ$35.00 + delivery.

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    A History of Madness at Sea
    By Nic Compton. Paperback, 0.46 kgs, 160mm x 235mm, 280 pages. Black & White / Colour photographs. Published 2017

    Confined in a small space for months on end, subject to ship's discipline and living on limited food supplies, many sailors of old lost their minds – and no wonder. Many still do.

    The result in some instances was bloodthirsty mutinies, such as the whaleboat Sharon whose captain was butchered and fed to the ship's pigs in a crazed attack in the Pacific. Or mob violence, such as the 147 survivors on the raft of the Medusa, who slaughtered each other in a two-week orgy of violence. So serious was the problem that the Royal Navy's own physician claimed sailors were seven times more likely to go mad than the rest of the population.

    Historic figures such as Christopher Columbus, George Vancouver, Fletcher Christian (leader of the munity of the Bounty) and Robert FitzRoy (founder of the Met Office) have all had their sanity questioned.

    More recently, sailors in today's round-the-world races often experience disturbing hallucinations, including seeing elephants floating in the sea and strangers taking the helm, or suffer complete psychological breakdown, like Donald Crowhurst. Others become hypnotised by the sea and jump to their deaths.

    Off the Deep End looks at the sea's physical character, how it confuses our senses and makes rational thought difficult. It explores the long history of madness at sea and how that is echoed in many of today's yacht races. It looks at the often-marginal behaviour of sailors living both figuratively and literally outside society's usual rules. And it also looks at the sea's power to heal, as well as cause, madness.

    NZ$30.00 + delivery.

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    A Story of Survival and Rescue

    By John Aldrideg & Anthony Sosinski. Paperback, 154mm x 235mm, 262 pages. Published 2017
    In the dead of night on July 24, 2013, John Aldridge was thrown off the back of the Anna Mary while his fishing partner, Anthony Sosinski, slept below. As desperate hours ticked by, Sosinski, the families, the local fishing community, and the U.S. Coast Guard in three states mobilized in an unprecedented search effort that culminated in a rare and exhilarating success.

    A tale of survival, perseverance, and community, A Speck in the Sea tells of one man’s struggle to survive as friends and strangers work separately, and together, to bring him home. Aldridge’s wrenching first-person account intertwines with the narrative of the massive, constantly evolving rescue operation designed to save him.

    NZ$40.00 + delivery.

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    438 DAYS.
    An Extraordinary True Story of Survival at Sea

    By Jonathan Franklin . Paperback, 154mm x 235mm, 274 pages. Published 2015
    On 17th November, 2012, Salvador Alvarenga left the coast of Mexico for a two-day fishing trip. A vicious storm killed his engine and the current dragged his boat out to sea. The storm picked up and carried him West, deeper into the heart of the Pacific Ocean. Alvarenga would not touch solid ground again for 14 months. When he was washed ashore on January 30th, 2014, he had drifted over 9,000 miles.

    Three dozen cruise ships and container vessels passed nearby. Not one stopped for the stranded fisherman. He considered suicide on multiple occasions - including offering himself up to a pack of circling sharks. But Alvarenga developed a method of survival that kept his body and mind intact long enough for the Pacific Ocean to spit him up onto a remote palm-studded island. Crawling ashore, he was saved by a local couple living in their own private castaway paradise.

    Based on dozens of hours of interviews with Alvarenga and his colleagues, search and rescue officials, the medical team that saved his life and the remote islanders who nursed him back to normality, this is an epic tale of survival and one man's incredible story of beating the ultimate odds.

    NZ$40.00 + delivery.

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    By Eleanor Learmonth & Jenny Tabakoff. Paperback, 0.47kg 153mm x 235mm, 328 pages.
    True Stories of Disaster, Survival and Brutality.

    Disaster strikes. A ship goes down, a plane crashes, a party of travellers is cut off. But when the panic and confusion subside and the dead are counted, the survivors must find a way to keep surviving. And in desperation, unconstrained by law or conventional authority, the tactics they resort to can be both horrifying and ultimately self-destructive.

    Learmonth and Tabakoff outline the physical and neurological changes that typically affect the victims of disaster. Then, using true stories from history as case studies, they investigate the scenario famously imagined by William Golding in Lord of the Flies and borne out by the extraordinary Robbers Cave experiments of the 1950s. As this fascinating book unfolds the awful truth becomes clear. In extremis, humans are capable of a swift descent into murderous savagery that is both hard to believe-and impossible to forget.

    Featuring shipwrecks such as the Raft of the Medusa, the Wreck of the Wager, the lifeboat William Brown, and the shipwreck survivors of the Auckland Islands, this book is an eye opener to human behaviour and the extent of self-preservation some so called 'civilised' people will adopt.

    The Lord of the Flies Principle is as follows:

  • Groups will inevitably fragment into factions.
  • Leaders frequently become obsessed with maintaining control rather than leading.
  • If the strong are battling to survive, they will not waste care and resources on the weak.
  • Morality, mercy and compassion are the expendable luxuries of civilisation
  • Individuals will passively sanction evil actions by others to avoid becoming the next victim.
  • In the long run, there is only one rule: Self-preservation.

    NZ$45.00 + delivery.

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    By Rob Mundle. Paperback, 127mm x 197mm, 444 pages. Black & White Photographs. First Published 2009.
    This book chronicles some of the most remarkable stories of survival and daring the world's oceans have ever hosted. Amazing feats of courage: some verging on madness, others where death is eluded through sheer bravery, determination and innovation - or even divine intervention?

    NZ$32.00 + delivery.

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    Edited By Tom Lochhaas, Paperback, 152mm x 228mm, 378 pages.
    Eighteen chronicles from men and women who sailed to the ends of the earth and returned to tell about it.
    They risked everything to break a record, win a race, prove a point, test themselves, or for reasons they can't explain. They include the first sailor to survive a Cape Horn rounding alone, the doctor who crossed the Atlantic in a tiny rubber raft without food or water, they twenty-four-year-old who became the fastest woman to sail around the world alone, and fifteen other singular adventurers whose stories have an enduring capacity to inspire and amaze.

    NZ$47.00 + delivery.

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    By Paul Gelder. Paperback, 128mm x 198mm, 246 pages.
    By the same author as the bestselling Total Loss, this new collection of terrifying and compelling accounts of yachts lost at sea contains invaluable life-saving lessons for sailors in peril.
    Paul Gelder, editor of Yachting Monthly magazine, has compiled 30 gripping first-hand accounts of shipwreck and sinking caused by severe storms, navigational blunders, collision, gear failure, fire and crew exhaustion.
  • If your yacht is holed, would your bilge pumps cope?
  • In a dismasting, could you cut the rig away and make a new one?
  • If your rudder dropped off, could you create an emergency steering system?
  • Do you carry a knife? If your lifeline became dangerously tangled, could you cut yourself free?
    Sunk Without Trace chronicles accidents from the extraordinary to the everyday. There are fires, explosions, a hurricane, deadly encounters with coral reefs, capsizes and encounters with UFOs.
    There are some truly remarkable accounts here - and some amazing demonstrations of courage, initiative and dogged determination, as well as thought-provoking lessons from which we can all learn.

    NZ$25.00 + delivery.

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    By Miles Smeeton. Paperback, 0.21kg, 128mm x 198m, 244 pages. This edition published 2013.
    "There was a sudden, sickening sense of disaster. I felt a great lurch and heel, and a thunder of sound filled my ears. I was conscious, in a terrified moment, of being driven into the front and side of my bunk with tremendous force. At the same time there was a tearing cracking sound, as if Tzu Hang was being ripped apart, and water burst solidly, raging into the cabin. There was darkness, black darkness, and I fought wildly to get out, thinking Tzu Hang had already gone. Then suddenly I was standing again, waist deep in water, and floorboards and cushions, mattresses and books were sloshing in wild confusion round me"

    Miles Smeeton and his wife Beryl sailed their 46-foot bermuda ketch, Tzu Hang, in the wild seas of Cape Horn, following the tracks of the old sailing clippers through the world's most notorious waters. This is an exciting true story of survival against all odds, but it is also a thoughtful book which provides hard-learned lessons for other intrepid sailors. As Nevil Shute writes in his forword; "It has been left to Miles Smeeton to tell us in clear and simple language just where the limits of safety lie".

    NZ$28.00 + delivery.

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    By Paul Gelder. Paperback, 128mm X 198mm, 274 pages.
    Total Loss is an enthralling collection of dramatic stories of yachts lost at sea. From the tragic sinking of the yacht Ouzo, run down or swamped by a P&O ferry in the English Channel, to an eyewitness account of the wreck of Hooligan V, here are gripping tales of collisions with UFOs (Unidentified Floating Objects), fire, explosion, crew exhaustion, severe weather, navigational blunders, capsize and dismastings that will have you on the edge of your seat.

    Total Loss holds the reader in morbid fascination whilst offering insights into strategies which could save the lives of skippers and crew. It is a compelling, thought-provoking read.

    Paul Gelder is the editor of yachting Monthly and has sailed a wide variety of yachts from classics such as Gypsy Moth IV to ocean racers and family cruising yachts.

    NZ$25.00 + Delivery

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    By Spike Walker, Hardback, 0.39kg, 145mm x 216mm, 273 pages.
    On December 8, 2004, during a brutal storm, a Malaysian cargo ship on its way from Seattle to China runs aground off the coast of Alaska's Aleutian Islands. One of the most incredible Coast Guard rescue missions of all times is set in motion.
    Lifting off in the blinding snowstorm, two Coast Guard H-60 Jayhawk helicopters race to the scene to try to save as many of the vessel's crewmen as possible, before she sinks or rolls over. Through gale-force winds, all but nine are hoisted by rescue basket to safety. One of the Jayhawks is soon forced to return to base because of mechanical difficulties. With darkness closing in and the storm intensifying, the second chopper crew tries to complete the mission when a fifty-foot-high rogue wave emerges out of the darkness.
    The monster wave plows into the side of the freighter, explodes several hundred feet into the air, and washes the chopper out of the sky and into the freezing sea. Some escape. Other die trying. But without survival suits, no one will last for long. In an attempt to do what no one else has in such massive seas, a pair of gusty H-65 Dolphin pilots take off from the teetering flight deck of the nearby Coast Guard cutter Alex Haley. After racing to the scene, they pluck survivors from the water one by one, just moments before they would have been carried off into the man-eating surf.
    Meanwhile, 22-year-old rescue swimmer Aaron Bean - on his first Coast Guard mission - is left behind on the deck of the freighter to watch over the vessel's lone remaining survivor, the ship's captain. Before long the freighter beaneath them breaks in half in a reef. Bean and the captain are cast adrift in high seas and blizzard snows as thirty-foot breakers crash across the open deck. Often burying them completely, the icy waves threaten to sweep them away or drown them on the spot. Along with those in the water, their chances of surviving grow slimmer by the minute.
    Through interviews with many of the surviving participants of the disaster and with access to documents and photos, acclaimed author Spike Walker has crafted a devastating, white-knuckle tale of survival and death in the unforgiving Alaskan waters.

    NZ$45.00 + delivery.

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    By Tom Lochhaas. Paperback, 0.24 kg, 140mm x 210mm x 15mm,185 pages, black and white photographs. Printed 2013
    Rough waters may seem the clear choice to you, but docking on a sunny, calm day can turn just as deadly - all you have to do is fail to think! That is what happened to author Ton Lochhaas more than twenty years ago, when he fell off his boat in its harbour and struggled to get out of the frigid water, even with help from a friend. Without a personal floation device, he'd become a dead weight within moments. Complacency had turned a simple docking into a potentially fatal endeavor. Tom realised after this that he had to change attitude about sailing safety.

    With Suddenly Overboard, Tom will change your atitude about water safety, sharing stories about sailors who experienced catastrophes when least expecting them and who were rescued, or who died, or who lived to tell the tale simply by good luck. With 50% of sailing fatalities happening when docking or anchoring this is an essential and insightful read for any sailor.

    NZ$37.00 + delivery.

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    117 DAYS ADRIFT.
    By Maurice and Maralyn Bailey. Paperback, 140mm X 216mm, 192 pages, monochrome illustrations.
    When their yacht sank beneath them in the Pacific Ocean, the Bailey family were destined to enter the record books. Their survival for nearly four months in a rubber raft - relying on their own efforts to catch food and water - is a fantastic human story of adaptation to totally alien conditions. It is a story of amazing courage, resolution and endurance and , in their remarkable survival, an outstanding demonstration of the unconquerable human spirit.
    Essential reading for all who love the sea and for all who enjoy a gripping true story. 117 Days Adrift was originally published in 1974 and remains a fascinating and inspiring tale that has become one of the classics of the sea.

    NZ$40.00 + Delivery

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    See also Shipwrecks and Maritime Disasters

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