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Abandoned Ship: An intimate account of the Costa Concordia shipwreck

Abandoned Ship: An intimate account of the Costa Concordia shipwreck [Kindle Edition]

Benji Smith
3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)

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Product Description

Product Description

On January 13, 2012, the Costa Concordia -- a thousand foot long luxury cruise ship, twice the size of the Titanic -- ventured into shallow water and smashed into the rocks of a tiny island off the coast of Italy, throwing the four thousand passengers and crew members into a state of chaos. The captain and officers all abandoned ship, leaving the few remaining castaways to fend for themselves as the boat toppled onto its side and water flooded into the passenger decks.

In the wee hours of the night, newlyweds Benji Smith and Emily Lau feared for their lives, desparate and terrified after a malfunctioning lifeboat left them stranded on the sinking ship. By this point, the other lifeboats had all gone. They had been left behind.

This thoughtful memoir -- hailed by The Daily Telegraph as "a compelling, minute-by-minute account of the chaotic evacuation" -- tells the remarkable story of the couple's harrowing escape, as they clung to a rope and rapelled down the hull of the doomed vessel.

But the astonishing story continues, as they find themselves stranded in Rome and ignored by the United States Embassy. With only the clothes on their backs, they relied upon the kindness of strangers to help them find food and shelter, clothing and medical attention. And finally a ticket home.

But even then, in the safety of their own home, they would find their sleep haunted by nightmares and their days crippled by anxiety and insecurity. And even as they struggled to overcome PTSD, they would simultaneously find themselves in a battle with the news media to even have their story told.

Praised by Newsweek/The Daily Beast for its "honest reflection and frightening detail", this gripping, triumphant story is ultimately a spiritual tale, the story of a pair of survivors who find hope and meaning in the aftermath of a tragedy.

About the Author

Benji Smith and his wife, classical singer and composer Emily Lau, have told their inspirational story of survival and recovery on Good Morning America, CBS This Morning, CNN International, BBC Radio, CBC News, and Al Jazeera English. Benji's writing has been featured on the Huffington Post and reviewed by The Daily Beast and The Daily Telegraph. The couple live in Boston, Massachusetts surrounded by a herd of dogs and cats.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 522 KB
  • Print Length: 360 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1481285939
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #215,183 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I could not put the book down. 19 Feb 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Excellent first hand account of the tragic and very stupid shipwreck. I am shocked at the treatment the author and his wife received at the US Embassy in Rome. I hope I never have to need their help.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Wonderfully told personal account of a tragedy. 18 Feb 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Wonderful personal account of a unnecessarily tragic situation. The author did an excellent job making me feel the way he and his wife must have felt while fearing for their lives and enduring the endless runaround and relentless incompetence afterwards. Definitely recommend!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An honest open experience shared. 25 Mar 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This book was unputdownable (if that was a word!) for the most part, and well worth reading for the knowledge about the shipwreck and how journalists and TV news works, quite apart from the human costs shared. It is the sort of book you will think about afterwards for some time.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Like everyone else I was shocked when the news of this 'accident' broke and especially with the stupid decisions of a cowardly Captain. I really enjoyed (if this is an appropriate word) reading the inside story - this is well written, with love and humour and honesty. I wish Benji and Emily love and happiness for their future and peace to everyone affected by the events of this ill fated cruise.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Abandoned ship 17 Mar 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Well written and a good account of what the passengers went through .well worth reading.everybody should read this bok before booking a cruise
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars amazing read 16 Mar 2013
Format:Kindle Edition
i wholeheartedly disagree with the reviewer who stated that Benji`s motive for writing this book was greed. The word greed should perhaps be used to describe the media who just were interested in sensationalism. personally i found the book to be a shocking insight into the Costa Concordia disaster and the failure of the government to help in the aftermath. the response from ordinary people however was truly uplifting and exquisite in detail, the treatment and conditions these people endured was nothing short of shocking, but their resourcefulness and the kindness of others helped them not just survive in the days following the disaster, but also in the months to follow when PTSD became an issue. highly recommended read
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars okay 11 Jun 2013
By willow
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
i thought there would have been more in this book about the actual accident rather than it concentrating on officialism
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars No more cruises for me 7 Jun 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Shows big business and government in a true light. Don't give a s*** about the ordinary man, hush up their cock-ups and frauds.
A book everyone should read with nice bits of spiritual philosophy thrown in. Sounds like a nice guy.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Abandoned Content
There are too many pages/chapters not related to the Costa Concordia incident.
The title says it is an intimate account of the shipwreck - it is also an intimate account of... Read more
Published 6 months ago by Zena Nattriss
5.0 out of 5 stars Compelling reading
Only knew about this disaster by tv news, had my eyes opened by this book. Benji and Emily are so fortunate to have found each other

Published 8 months ago by Andy Watkiss
4.0 out of 5 stars A Survivor's Mother's Opinion.......
I was very intersted in reading Benji's story of survival because I am the mother of another survivor from the Costa Concordia tragedy. Read more
Published 8 months ago by Ann Rawling
3.0 out of 5 stars Great story but got a repetitive
Great to hear this story from someone actually on the ship. Cant imagine the horror they went through even after reading this and to be pretty much abandoned by their Embassies is... Read more
Published 10 months ago by amy502
3.0 out of 5 stars Self indulgent
This account proved self indulgent and not very interesting. But a few insights were given and they underlined the irresponsibility of the crew and the Captain in particular.
Published 12 months ago by Clive Turner
3.0 out of 5 stars Quite good
Found the story line quite interesting. It must have been an ordeal for old and young. especially in the dark.
Not riviting. Read more
Published 14 months ago by Charlie Sime
2.0 out of 5 stars Not very impressed by this account
Not too impressed. I gave up after reading about a third of the book. Life is too short so turned to someting more interesting
Published 16 months ago by Robert W. Dixon-Gough
3.0 out of 5 stars Abandoned Sip
It was an interesting read,I just wish there were more report's from other passenger's and not just Benji. Read more
Published 16 months ago by suespear
3.0 out of 5 stars A bit too long
Whilst the first half of the book giving an account of the shipwreck and the immediate aftermath were of interest - the long drawn out description of the author's experiences with... Read more
Published 17 months ago by Amazon Customer
The book started off well and described the shipwreck and events afterwards very graphically. The couple certainly had a traumatic experience (along with the rest of the... Read more
Published 17 months ago by Mildie
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