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Spero (Kindle Singles)

Spero (Kindle Singles) [Kindle Edition]

Ursula Westmacott
3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)

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Product Description

Product Description

In 1979, Ursula Westmacott impulsively left London and her modelling career to join her boyfriend Chris Crocker on board Spero, a 42-foot sailing boat built in 1909 and never modernized -- no engine and just a sextant for navigation. The two intrepid sailors headed south for Gibraltar, then Africa, finally crossing the Atlantic to reach Brazil.

Westmacott’s account of their voyage – hilarious at times, hair-raising at others – forms a remarkable adventure story from a pre-Internet era.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 3154 KB
  • Print Length: 95 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #11,347 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Worthwhile read but not altogether about sailing 11 Feb 2014
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The author writes very well and amusingly, dwelling mostly on her love of cooking, the challenges of catering on a small and Spartan vessel and "making do". She is engagingly frank about the flaws in her own character and that of her partner (later husband). She prefers to write about the places they visit it in their yacht Spero than about the sailing aspects of their long voyage. It's comparatively short which probably means I'll be tempted to read it again to savour the writing.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Spellbinding Account of a Remarkable Journey 4 Feb 2014
In the 1970s Chris Crocker was a successful restaurateur fast getting fed up with Swinging London and all its gaudy trappings. So he bought an ancient sailing boat (1909, the Spero of the title) and set off to Rio with his girl-friend Ursula. No matter that he had little sailing experience (none at all of navigation); that Spero was a small and narrow day boat with a galley equipped to provide nothing more challenging than a cheese roll or a gin & tonic; and that Ursula herself was completely new to the game: off they went and this is their amazing story.
The voyage ended up taking two years with farcical and sometimes tragic adventures at every turn. I read Spero in one sitting: the intrepid pluck of the two adventurers (some might call it chutzpah) is breathtaking. The pair are characters you begin to care about from the moment you meet them, and by the time it's all over they're old friends. An extraordinary adventure, painted in brilliant primary colours.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing Memoir 9 Feb 2014
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A young woman goes on the adventure of a lifetime in this beautifully written memoir that reads as though every word is true. With no previous experience of the sea to speak of, the author finds herself sailing down the coast of Africa in a tiny, antique boat designed for racing off Cowes. She manages to shed a generous sidelight over the rest of her life in a very distinctive voice, so you feel you might be listening to her, hunched up in the cabin and eating her ocean-going food. Part foodie travelogue, part journey through life, she eventually crosses the Atlantic without an engine or any modern 'cheating' devices like gps, while her newly acquired (in a bizarre session in Banjul) husband navigates by the stars...

Well, what can I say? Read it for yourself - you'll be charmed
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Inspiring and fun, this book almost makes me want to cross the Atlantic in a sail boat. Ursula writes with humor and detail and brings the reader along their journey. Don't miss the link to the great pictures!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Spero 7 Feb 2014
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a very good travel narrative,I found it very informative and entertaining, the cultural differences especially from one country to another makes interesting reading.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good read,lots of devotion And grit 7 Feb 2014
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Enterprising project and determination shown together with a lot of luck, glad it all worked out with a god conclusion.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Lovers Tale: From Falmouth to Rio 4 Feb 2014
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This is a must read. My interest was generated because Ursula is my eldest son’s wife’s mother. Regardless, this is a wonderful story that will delight you whether or not you have family connections. It is a travelogue, a family history and a cookbook all rolled into one. Most of all, it is a love story between two people, Ursula and Crocker, between two people and their boat, Spero, and between those two people and the people they meet and the places they visit on the way from Falmouth to Rio. The action takes place during the late 1970’s to the early 1980’s and, if you lived through those times, you will find it interesting to map what you were doing then with what they were experiencing. And, if you were not around then, it will serve to bring new insights and perspectives to your understanding of those times. Ursula has a light touch to her writing with some wonderful phraseology and so my advice is to Sign in, Download and Curl up for a jolly good read!
John Busby
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars unusual travel book 5 Mar 2014
By Megan
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travel book on sea instead of land, tough but pleasant times and interesting countries. good and pleasant read for all
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