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on 23 February 2008
We received our copy of Gregor Tarjan's book recently and within a very short time had read it cover to cover. The content is very current covering recent models of catamarans, which do tend to be larger, but that is also the trend in production.
The technical detail is excellent and well explained with plenty of graphs and data plus well drawn diagrams to illustrate the points made. We found the description of the use of apparent wind by catamarans particularly good. There is certainly mention of speed and we are by no means racers ourselves, however appreciate that the use of certain racing techniques improves our cruising experience such as reefing without having to turn into the wind.
We have never previous posted a review on Amazon, but were so impressed with this book, we vowed we would make an exception. It will certainly have pride of place on our catamaran's bookshelf. Kev & Jo
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on 19 January 2008
This book is an excellent addition to the stable of books dealing with cruising catamaran sailing. It's a heavy hardback with beautiful photography, an attractive layout and good diagrams. Picking up this book after reading Charles Kanter's 'Cruising in Catamarans' or its recent update published as 'Cruising Catamaran Communiqué' you wonder how two books on the same subject with similar ideas behind them could be so different!

This book is beautiful and would make a wonderful coffee table book as well as an interesting read. There's some great photography often in beautiful locations. There are also photographs and plans of different catamarans and the text is helpful. Tarjan doesn't spend too long on the old chestnuts of catamaran vs monohull and will they capsize but he gives a good overview of general principles of catamaran sailing, heavy weather tactics, manufacture, some technical information on hull shapes, rigs, keels vs daggerboards and benefits/downsides of different configurations.

It becomes clear very quickly when reading this book that Tarjan tends to spend time on larger cruising catamarans. Here in the UK most Cats vary from 26ft - 40ft; most that I see are probably 35ft or less. Tarjan mentions the 34 foot Gemini 105MC in his text but most of the cats he discusses/photographs are whoppers, 45-60 feet. Perhaps these are more common in America but for sailors in UK waters they might make your own boat look a bit weedy.

Tarjan also is keen on speed. He perhaps affords it more importance than many cruising sailors would and there's plenty of discussion about how useful speed is to get you away from bad weather, but the text reads very much as if the cruising cat owner is really also a racer and I would imagine this is not very often the case. Charles Kanter's contention that most cruisers aren't speed freaks seems more likely to me and his more thorough and detailed treatment of catamaran sailing is perhaps more useful to the novice than in this book where less time is spent on multihull seamanship and more of that time on trimming sails for maximum speed.

However despite these reservations this book is a great read and good value for the price. It has at the end the apparently obligatory list of current multihulls (including one that's 100ft long!) with a very short amount of copy on them and a couple of photos. There are some helpful appendices with the Beaufort scale, a long-range cruising equipment checklist and other stuff and the photo credits, much appreciated because of the quality throughout of the photography and printing. The downside of this book? This author, although interesting, doesn't grab your attention in the same way as Charles Kanter. I think this makes another excellent addition to my cruising catamaran bookshelf but I wouldn't choose it over Charles Kanter's 'Cruising Catamaran Communiqué' if I could have only one book because that has more information for the medium sized cat owner to find helpful (by this I mean the 30-40 foot range). But it's still a great book and worthy of five stars.
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on 19 January 2008
This book is an excellent addition to the stable of books dealing with cruising catamaran sailing. It's a heavy hardback with beautiful photography, an attractive layout and good diagrams. Picking up this book after reading Charles Kanter's 'Cruising in Catamarans' or its recent update published as 'Cruising Catamaran Communiqué' you wonder how two books on the same subject with similar ideas behind them could be so different!

This book is beautiful and would make a wonderful coffee table book as well as an interesting read. There's some great photography often in beautiful locations. There are also photographs and plans of different catamarans and the text is helpful. Tarjan doesn't spend too long on the old chestnuts of catamaran vs monohull and will they capsize but he gives a good overview of general principles of catamaran sailing, heavy weather tactics, manufacture, some technical information on hull shapes, rigs, keels vs daggerboards and benefits/downsides of different configurations.

It becomes clear very quickly when reading this book that Tarjan tends to spend time on larger cruising catamarans. Here in the UK most Cats vary from 26ft - 40ft; most that I see are probably 35ft or less. Tarjan mentions the 34 foot Gemini 105MC in his text but most of the cats he discusses/photographs are whoppers, 45-60 feet. Perhaps these are more common in America but for sailors in UK waters they might make your own boat look a bit weedy.

Tarjan also is keen on speed. He perhaps affords it more importance than many cruising sailors would and there's plenty of discussion about how useful speed is to get you away from bad weather, but the text reads very much as if the cruising cat owner is really also a racer and I would imagine this is not very often the case. Charles Kanter's contention that most cruisers aren't speed freaks seems more likely to me and his more thorough and detailed treatment of catamaran sailing is perhaps more useful to the novice than in this book where less time is spent on multihull seamanship and more of that time on trimming sails for maximum speed.

However despite these reservations this book is a great read and good value for the price. It has at the end the apparently obligatory list of current multihulls (including one that's 100ft long!) with a very short amount of copy on them and a couple of photos. There are some helpful appendices with the Beaufort scale, a long-range cruising equipment checklist and other stuff and the photo credits, much appreciated because of the quality throughout of the photography and printing. The downside of this book? This author, although interesting, doesn't grab your attention in the same way as Charles Kanter. I think this makes another excellent addition to my cruising catamaran bookshelf but I wouldn't choose it over Charles Kanter's 'Cruising Catamaran Communiqué' if I could have only one book because that has more information for the medium sized cat owner to find helpful (by this I mean the 30-40 foot range). But it's still a great book and worthy of five stars.
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on 5 January 2013
Bought this for my husband who is a keen mono hull sailor as we are going with friends on a catamaran holiday. I am reliably informed that it is a very good book and to be honest, he hasn't put it down since opening it at Christmas!
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on 26 May 2011
Oh boy!
This is the coffee table book from which dreams are made.
I've had to stack it in the bookshelves to protect it from the drooling readers!
Great text and visual.
Oh how I would love to have been the writer....
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on 1 May 2013
If you are seriously considering a catamaran, helps you through the selection process. However, will need continual update to cover newer models and design/build improvements.
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on 24 October 2011
A stunning book and very much appreciated by the sailors in the family. Can recommend it to anyone interested in sailing cats. Many thanks.
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on 4 March 2015
slightly slower delivery than expected, but really good book
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