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Left for Dead: The Untold Story of the Tragic 1979 Fastnet Race Paperback – 9 May 2008

4.7 out of 5 stars 125 customer reviews

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Paperback, 9 May 2008
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Product details

  • Paperback: 308 pages
  • Publisher: Adlard Coles Nautical; First Paperback Edition 2008 edition (9 May 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0713689366
  • ISBN-13: 978-0713689365
  • Product Dimensions: 12.7 x 2.3 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (125 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 567,660 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

"It has taken Ward 28 years to tell his tale but it is a truly piece of work"
-- Shetland Times, July 2008

"Left for Dead is Nick Ward's moving and inspirational account of his survival - against the odds" -- Yachting LIfe (June 2008)

"harrowing and deeply moving account of the events of August 11, 1979"
-- Southern Daily Echo (February 2009)

Review

"harrowing and deeply moving account of the events of August 11, 1979"

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
When a friend advised me to read this, I thought, "Why would I want to read that? I have no interest in sailing." Thankfully, my friend insisted.

The narrative is beautifully weighted with the perfect amount of detail, both biographical and concenring the Fastnet Race itself. Not only did I learn a great deal about this tragic race, but I also started to really root for the author and genuinely felt his desparation as hopes were raised and dashed.

The descriptive passage of the gathering storm and the growing fears in the crew of the Grimalkin is one of the most tense and gripping passages I have read in some time, particularly the vivid imagery of the ever changing colours of the sky and the ominous threat of the Irish Sea.

I would, as my friend did, insist that you read this book and then insist that all of your friends do the same.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Firstly, I just don't read books - they rarely keep my attention after the first chapter, and my shelves are littered with bookmarks sticking out from uncompleted attempts! And I've never had an interest in sailing. But I heard about this book and became more and more interested in how an ordinary guy got involved in such a prestigious but ultimately tragic race, and I wanted to know more about his eventual rescue and the hints of betrayal. I coped with the scene setting of the early chapters; in fact they surprised me by being very readable indeed. But once the race was underway Nick's excitement really came bubbling through, only to turn to nervousness and then, as the weather deteriorated, fear. Eventually, alone on the yacht except for the body of his friend, his desperation turns to near madness; but the reader is there alongside him, willing him on, sharing his deepest thoughts and feeling his desolation. An absolutely compelling read which I completed from cover to cover in record time! An adventure, and a poignant story of trust, fortitude and endurance... and, although Nick takes care to put himself in the place of his crewmates and not to be accusative, yes, betrayal. For those who may be put off by their lack of interest or knowledge in sailing, don't be... OK, there is a certain amount of technical terminology but if I coped, anyone can, and there is a reference diagram in case the reader wishes to learn a little more. A selection of Nick's personal photos adds further interest to this highly recommended book.
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Format: Hardcover
What a fabulous book!

From the start I was gripped, despite having no interest in sailing whatsoever. I found the development of the story - how much bad luck can a guy get - completely absorbing.

Beatufully told.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The first book in a long time that I simply couldn't put down.

The descriptions of wild seas are better than accurate - they actually take you there.

If you have been out to sea, it will take you right back there. It describes perfectly the way it can change in the course of minutes and how stomach clenchingly terrifying it can be.

Of course, Mr Ward has been in a situation that, thankfully, few of us have ever - or ever will be - in.

This, however, is more than simply a description of scary seas and "rough weather". It is about survival against the odds and a captivating hour by hour narrative of a harrowing story.

In summary, an excellent and gripping story with the most vivid descriptive passages I have read in many a year. Buy it!
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Format: Paperback
I read this in less than a day. I just couldn't put it down. It is an amazing survival story, from which Nick should not have survived. But the fact that it is a story that remained untold for 25 years shows the courage it must have taken to relive those days and write the book. The descriptions of the seas and the emotions make it seem incredibly real and allows you to follow the highs and lows of the events as they unfold. The paperback version includes more information and photos. I found the book quite chilling not only because of the power of the sea but the survival story itself. A story I won't forget easily.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
My son met Nick whilst on a Comp Crew course with the UKSA in the Solent. He sat on the yacht with the boys and told them the story. They were so inspired they could not stop talking about it so I bought the book. This will definitely be made into a film and is an amazing account of an unbelievable tragedy. I'm not a big reader but I could not put this down.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I was a bit reluctant at first, when reading the first chapter and I was afraid I had stumbled upon a boring autobiography. However, when the author starts describing the race, the description evoces agony and interest and it is fast-paced. It is a nice story, told from a personal point of view and it could just as easily have been written as a novel. Perhaps some elements in the book's structure could have been better and some more info provided on some matters, but overall I believe it worth the time it takes to read it.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
What an amazing story of survival. How traumatic a storm was that. Having been caught in a small storm myself for four hours - I cannot imagine what this author endured. It is a miracle he survived. His account and mature reflection many years after this terrible event made it a fascinating read. I am so glad that he was able to rebuild his life. Sad that the other young crew members did not go to see him straight after the event.
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