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Sailing Alone Around the World

Joshua Slocum

Book Overview: 

Joshua Slocum was the first man to sail around the world alone in a small boat. He personally rebuilt an 11.2 metre sloop-rigged fishing boat that he named the Spray. On April 24, 1895, he set sail from Boston, Massachusetts. More than three years later, he returned to Newport, Rhode Island, on June 27, 1898 having circumnavigated the world, a distance of 46,000 miles.

In 1899 he described the voyage in Sailing Alone Around the World now considered a classic of travel literature. It is a wonderful adventure story from the Age of Sail and a book of which Arthur Ransome declared, “boys who do not like this book ought to be drowned at once.”

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .The day after my arrival at Horta was the feast of a great saint. Boats loaded with people came from other islands to celebrate at Horta, the capital, or Jerusalem, of the Azores. The deck of the Spray was crowded from morning till night with men, women, and children. On the day after the feast a kind-hearted native harnessed a team and drove me a day over the beautiful roads all about Fayal, "because," said he, in broken English, "when I was in America and couldn't speak a word of English, I found it hard till I met some one who seemed to have time to listen to my story, and I promised my good saint then that if ever a stranger came to my country I would try to make him happy." Unfortunately, this gentleman brought along an interpreter, that I might "learn more of the country." The fellow was nearly the death of me, talking of ships and voyages, and of the boats he had steered, the last thing in the world I wished to hear. He had sailed out of New Bedford, so he said, fo. . . Read More

Community Reviews

Check out how awesome this Joshua Slocum dude is. He's old, he's on a boat, he's got a badass straw hat. He doesn't care that he looks like a doofus with it on, which makes him that much cooler. He was the first person to circumnavigate the world alone (and that means to sail all the way around it,

This used to be required reading for Massachusetts high school students. Joshua Slocum was the first to sail solo around the world. Still crazy to this day. The story was great in detail and local interest for the places it dealt with. I love Slocum's writing at points, but like Moby Dick, at other

“I was born in the breezes”(1844). Joshua Slocum was a unique character born in Nova Scotia and then naturalized as a US citizen. He came from a family with ties to the sea and boat building. After a life being everything from a cabin boy to a ship captain he was given what was basically the frame o

This was one of the most influential books that I have ever read. I read it while still in my teens. Growing up in a seafaring (Naval) family I was able to sail from age eight. At eighteen, when other teens were looking for their first car, I bought (from an eighty-two year old widow) my first yacht

In a word, this book is delightful.

The author, Joshua Slocum, did something truly remarkable. He was the first human being to ever sail alone around the world. Yet, perhaps the best part of this story is his style of presentation. Slocum is laid back, self-effacing, and actually quite funny.

Some o

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