In the autumn of 1968,Donald Crowhurst set out from England in his untested trimaran,a competitor in the first singlehanded nonstop around-the-world sailboat race. Eight months later,the boat was found in mid-Atlantic with no one on board. Crowhurst's logs and diaries revealed that,although he had radioed messages from his supposed round-the-world course,he had in fact never left the Atlantic. This journalistic masterpiece reconstructs what happened: Crowhurst's growing distrust of his boat; his first decision to attempt one of the great hoaxes of our time; the lying radio transmissions; the "triumphal" return up the Atlantic as the elapsed-time race leader; and the fantastic ending. The Strange Last Voyage of Donald Crowhurst is both a suspenseful narrative and a psychological casebook of human zeal and anguish.
|Publisher:||Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.|
About the Author
Nicholas Tomalin studied English literature at Trinity Hall, Cambridge. He was a featured columnist for the Daily Express, the Sunday Times, and the Evening Standard, before becoming literary editor of the New Statesman. He was nominated for Reporter of the Year for his coverage of the war in Vietnam. Tomalin was killed in Israel in 1973 while reporting on the Yom Kippur War.
Ron Hall studied mathematics and statistics at Pembroke College, Cambridge. He was cofounder of the Sunday Times' investigative unit "Insight," where he was editor from 1964-66, and became managing editor of the Sunday Times in 1969. He died at age 79 in 2014.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
This work is a fairly thorough, almost complete, analysis of the a wildly interesting story of a courageous endeavor that fell to human frailty. Donald Crowhurst saw a way out of financial difficulty and a way into celebrity, but prepared with haste, incompletely. With good intent, but a fair amount of trepidation, he embarked on one of the most challenging sea voyages imaginable - sindlehanding a small sailboat all the way around the earth without stopping - or receiving any assistance at all. Not many days into the voyage, he realized he could not complete it and set about to perpetrate one of the greatest hoaxes of all time. He failed in the hoax but succeeded in leaving us with a sailing mystery that rivals the Mary Deare. Couldn't put it down. One thing that this reader believes is that the hazards of lead solder should have been investigated by the competent authors, Tomlin and Hall. Soldering in the confined space of a small vessel is dangerous due to lead oxide fumes. Exposure to such fumes can result in lead poisoning - loss of appetite, indigestion, nausea, vomiting, constipation, headache, abdominal cramps, nervousness, and insomnia are symptoms. Is it possible that the hours of soldering required to repair and alter his transmitters could have caused many of the symptoms above, and even the dementia that was clearly present in his last log entries? We may never know, but a complete investigation should include this possibility, in this reader's humble opinion.