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16 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An extraordinary, terrifying, moving, spiritual voyage
This adventurous, wondrous journey along Britain's western seaboard never flinches from the physical horrors: sea sickness has never been so well described; and there are storms which make you thankful to be an armchair sailor. But Nicolson also allows us to feel the extraordinary enormity of the sea and the spirituality which goes with it. His nights being drenched by...
Published on 28 July 2004

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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars A rushed job
I agree with the Spectator reviewer who said "He has the genius of making you interested in something you're not interested in", it did make me want to go to sea, but as a written work it seemed tossed off to fit a TV tie-in schedule.
Adam Nicolson is a fine writer and I loved his insprirational prose but just when I was getting into it, the thing came to an abrupt...
Published on 27 Oct. 2005


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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars A rushed job, 27 Oct. 2005
By A Customer
I agree with the Spectator reviewer who said "He has the genius of making you interested in something you're not interested in", it did make me want to go to sea, but as a written work it seemed tossed off to fit a TV tie-in schedule.
Adam Nicolson is a fine writer and I loved his insprirational prose but just when I was getting into it, the thing came to an abrupt end. it reminded me of stories we all all wrote for English classes at school, which start well and finish with "and then I woke up and it was all a dream". It is notable as much for what it left out as what it put in. should have been 3 times as long to keep pace with the first few chapters.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Adam stays in the shallow end of the pool !, 1 Sept. 2006
By 
Jago Wells - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
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What is this ? A fine writer with a stirring tale to tell conspires to lose the plot before he has even dipped his toes in the subject matter.

What we have instead is a beautifully written essay rather than the weighty tome it might have been. The subject matter...Adam's mid life quest to revitalise a beautiful sailing boat and set out on a voyage of discovery with companion George...is dashed through like a literary jetski !

Characters come and go before you realise they are there. The end result is a frustrating read which makes the reader wonder why Adam conspired to throw away the opportunity to produce what might have been a nautical classic.

The TV programme proved AN to be a personable and highly engaging character. It's such a shame that he left the book rather high and dry on the shores of indifference.

Perhaps he might one day re-write Atlantic Britain and give it the depth its subject matter deserves.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Almost, but not quite seamanship, 3 Feb. 2005
By 
I approached this with eager anticipation having read an extract sometime ago in the Telegraph for which Nicolson writes - as usual, the editors had possibly selected the most dramatic segment of the entire book, and my expectations were high but sadly unfulfilled. An earlier Guardian review succinctly identifies the flaws: "The prose.... Feels jostled by competing interests". This is not really a sailing book yet it purports to be - Nicolson's over-the-top technical description in one chapter almost deliberately attempts to exclude sailing novices, yet he reveals himself to be one later in the book. The evocation of spirituality in times past is sometimes moving, but the materialistic way he manages the C4 TV sponsorship of the voyage at the expense of his fellow sailor (who facilitates almost all for him) and family is nothing short of barbaric and highly unspiritual. Rambling, self-indulgent and better left to serialisation in a Sunday paper.
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16 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An extraordinary, terrifying, moving, spiritual voyage, 28 July 2004
By A Customer
This adventurous, wondrous journey along Britain's western seaboard never flinches from the physical horrors: sea sickness has never been so well described; and there are storms which make you thankful to be an armchair sailor. But Nicolson also allows us to feel the extraordinary enormity of the sea and the spirituality which goes with it. His nights being drenched by storms are complemented by peaceful walks on tiny islands and intriguing encounters with people on land and at sea.
The process of sailing has its own language and rules, which unfurl like a poem, and the lyrical yet bold style takes us beyond one man's voyage into something much larger and more universal.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Too many adjectives, 25 Feb. 2005
By 
F. Greene "fran_from_willesden" (London, UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Reading this book, it seems like the author has written a rough manuscript of it and then gone through the whole thing with a copy of Rogets Thesaurus and changed words. I don't think I've ever read a book where each sentence has so many adjectives. It's very annoying.
It seems like the book was a rush job to coincide with the series. Obviously, not including a lot of the hard graft that goes into taking a boat to sea although the author is sometimes wet and exhausted - but not all the time. The view given in the book is of one mans selfless and romanticised expedition around Britain to which he left most of the hard work to some poor skipper and didn't even sail the last leg of the journey.
If you're going to film a journey by boat -then the boat should dictate what is filmed and not vice versa. Nearly losing your life to be filmed riding huge and dangerous waves in an inflatable red dinghy is irresponsible to say the least. Read if you will bit don't expect to be inspired by it.
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5.0 out of 5 stars This was given as a present, 14 Jan. 2014
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I believe that it was enjoyed very much. Cannot tell you anything more about the book. Do hope you enjoy it?
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1.0 out of 5 stars cheated, 10 Nov. 2014
By 
This is the same book as Seamanship - just a different title; i felt so cheated
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