- Also check our best rated Travel Book reviews
Down To The Sea In Ships: Of Ageless Oceans and Modern Men Hardcover – 2 Jan 2014
Customers who bought this item also bought
What other items do customers buy after viewing this item?
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
"Wonderful… Clare’s account of his journeys with the officers and crews of container ships is gripping and stomach-churning in equal measure" (Daily Telegraph)
"[A] beautifully written account of seafaring life" (Ian Critchley Sunday Times)
"A lyrical, heartfelt but eye-opening chronicle... Both romantic and realistic, written from the heart but crafted with a seafarer’s “passionate precision”, [Clare’s] book will steer you into the new year on a course that may deepen your grasp both of that world, and of ourselves" (Boyd Tonkin Independent)
"Stupendous and extraordinarily exciting... What Clare demonstrates, even beyond his undoubted gifts as writer, is his basic humanity. I read his wonderful book with gratitude for his insight – but also with increased admiration for the men to whom we owe almost everything in our comfortable and secure lives" (Philip Hoare Times Higher Education)
"Rich and dense, full of old sea-dog stories, with barely a word wasted, it’s a triumph of quiet artistry" (Marcus Berkmann Daily Mail)
Acclaimed nature writer Horatio Clare travels the great oceans on cargo ships, and witnesses the collision of two temperaments: man and the seaSee all Product description
Top customer reviews
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
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.
There are a few minor 'landlubber' terms/mistakes you'll pick up on if you're involved in/knowledgeable about shipping, and the 2nd half of the book drags a little when there's not much in an Atlantic storm to write about except big waves, and it does go on a little at times about how badly some crew are paid, but on the whole a book you'll want to keep reading right through and feel you're on the journey with the author.
There are a couple of minor inaccuracies but to mention them in any detail may detract from a vividly well written book. Horatio could have simply been passing on what some Junior Officer had told him.
Enjoyed from start to finish. Many thanks for the nostalgic read.
The book has it's faults and would have benefited much by a pre-publication professional critique. A seaman will instantly spot it's been written by a landlubber because there is too much subjective focus on things the author clearly feels are important to include. 5 metre waves must have been mentioned a dozen or more times, although professional seaman will talk more of the force of the wind and its effect on the sea by reference to the Beaufort scale. A lot of old Far East hands will hoot at the now defunct Singapore centre of debauchery, Bugis Street, being written about as 'Boogie' Street, and some seaman will say 'Hmmm' about his sighting of an albatross in the Bay of Biscay.
However, these are minor points, which don't detract from a well-constructed book, a cracking read and probably one the best works of the sea to come out for a long time. Read it.
Would you like to see more reviews about this item?
Most recent customer reviews