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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An. essay on the sea and on all of our journeys
Read it for the pleasure of the prose and the hidden world it reveals. A round the world story of (mainly) men meeting themselves in the revealing wash of oceans.
Published 3 months ago by Copse

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13 of 20 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A view from the bridge.
As an ex merchant seaman who has worked on container ships, albeit some forty odd years ago and saw the introduction of cost cutting crewing systems like the "Integrated ratings" or "General purpose ratings" schemes which sounded the death knell for the British Merchant Seaman and the switch to flags of convenience by the ship owners (not just the British).By "flagging...
Published 5 months ago by topmast bob


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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An. essay on the sea and on all of our journeys, 31 Mar 2014
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Copse (Berkshire, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Down To The Sea In Ships: Of Ageless Oceans and Modern Men (Kindle Edition)
Read it for the pleasure of the prose and the hidden world it reveals. A round the world story of (mainly) men meeting themselves in the revealing wash of oceans.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Important insights into the hidden world of shipping, 31 Mar 2014
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Really interesting insight into an essential part of our world that we never think of, but we should. If we want a sustainable and fair supply chain for the goods we use every day, it needs to take into account the people who transport them to us. Based on this book, the shipping industry in many cases is exploitative, dangerous, racist and cruel. We need more visibility on shipping. This book is a good starting place.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A fascinating insight into a life that's over the horizon from our lives ashore., 3 Mar 2014
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I found this story both revealing and informative. Clare develops a deep sense of the real life aboard the modern cargo ship, supplemented by some of the travails of the modern seafarer, whether it is lack of internet access or discriminatory pay and conditions for the crews.

The book tells the tale of the author's voyages on two ships. About two thirds of the book is taken up with the first voyage. Somewhat like Monserrat's "The Cruel Sea" (quoted from in Clare's tale), the story of the second ship seems to not fit so well - or maybe I felt an affinity with the first crew, and just couldn't warm to the second crew's story quite as much!

But that's a minor quibble! I looked forward to reading this book whenever I could and passed many pleasant hours on board with the sights, sounds and smells of the Maersk vessels. Anyone who ever wondered what life as a modern deep sea merchant seaman might be like will be fascinated.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A new Perspective, 25 Jun 2014
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This review is from: Down To The Sea In Ships: Of Ageless Oceans and Modern Men (Kindle Edition)
My only experience of sea going is by North Sea and Channel ferries; having said that I found this book both fascinating and illuminating .Horatio Clare writes well,I enjoyed the narratives of past voyages, a help to novices in appreciating the courage and endeavour of past ages. I think that Clare was highly empathetic concerning the lot of the Indonesian seamen, having known nothing of this in the past I am now acutely aware of their plight and feel that action should be taken at an international level to improve their lot however, I am not optimistic given the complexities of the world wide industry. Ending on a more positive note, this is a book well worth reading, elements of adventure ,maritime history, human life in all its variety and the geography of the oceans.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A beautifully written account of life on long haul cargo boats., 2 Jun 2014
This review is from: Down To The Sea In Ships: Of Ageless Oceans and Modern Men (Kindle Edition)
I enjoyed every word of this excellent book. Clare's description are detailed, lucid and visual, without ever being overblown or seeming contrived.
It helps if you are fascinated by the sea and it's traffic, but you could just enjoy this work as a great piece of writing. I loved it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating and reality at its best, 15 April 2014
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This review is from: Down To The Sea In Ships: Of Ageless Oceans and Modern Men (Kindle Edition)
This is a snapshot of modern shipping coupled with a journey around the world - wonderful writing and historical references thrown in to make a great read.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Down to the Sea in Ships, 16 Mar 2014
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Mr Clare writes brilliantly, evoking the many moods of the sea with insightful comment on his shipmates. For this reader more technical information on the ships would have been welcome, but this does not detract from a very satisfying read overall.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Ins and outs, 2 Mar 2014
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This review is from: Down To The Sea In Ships: Of Ageless Oceans and Modern Men (Kindle Edition)
Interesting and sort of compulsive but very readable. Highlights the attitudes of shipping companies to personnel and crews, and of governments to the world of commerce.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Read with an atlas., 25 Feb 2014
I felt like I had travelled round the world with the author. Moving and thought provoking. Disappointed he couldn't go through the Suez canal, I was looking forward to that bit of the journey. I read it with an atlas on my other knee and kept looking at google earth, fascinating. Have leant it to my mother, she is mesmerised. We are now working out who is going to read it for a second time first.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars serious and informative,, 24 Feb 2014
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This review is from: Down To The Sea In Ships: Of Ageless Oceans and Modern Men (Kindle Edition)
but has "can't put it down" quality as well. It made one really think about how our daily needs arrive from all over, and the characters who enable it to do so, with dreadful rates of pay, and hard lives away from their homes as well. I would have loved to have had twice as long a book and there were still subjects to fill out. Perhaps we could have an encore??
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