Passage To Juneau: A Sea and Its Meaning Paperback – 6 Oct 2000
- Choose from over 13,000 locations across the UK
- Prime members get unlimited deliveries at no additional cost
- Find your preferred location and add it to your address book
- Dispatch to this address when you check out
Frequently Bought Together
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
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.
Jonathan Raban's Passage to Juneau is a pure delight, even for the most dedicated landlubbers. On April Fool's Day 1993, Raban set sail in his 35-foot ketch from "virtual reality" Seattle, to travel the 1,000 or so miles up the often turbulent and tricky Inside Passage to Alaska. Despite describing himself as "a timid, weedy, cerebral type, never more out of my element than when I'm at sea", he nevertheless "meant to go fishing for reflections and come back with a glittering haul". And glittering this is, for Raban writes with such vivid acuity and witty iconoclasm about charted and uncharted waters, actual, historical, anthropological, natural and personal--and much else besides. His constants as he threads his course through the fretwork of islands, narrows and passes are tracing Captain Vancouver's 1792 voyage in the Discovery; the Northwest Indians' tenacious relation to the sea that dominated their lives and was mirrored in their art; Edmund Burke's 1757 theory of the sublime (terror was the most necessary ingredient) and the consequent, ecstatic recording of the coastal landscape (not by Vancouver, who found it dull and gloomy, but by his snobbish young upper-class officers); Raban's father's death and its aftermath which interrupted his voyage; and, of course, the sea itself with its six basic movements: pitch, roll, yaw, heave, surge and sway.
Every page offers rewarding observations and colourful commentary: on the death of the great fisheries, the new tourism, a rereading of Shelley and Marcus Aurelius, bird flight, the rigours of outpost life and even indeed the origins of "nookie." All of this makes for an utterly engaging, generously questing, scholarly and richly pleasurable work. --Ruth Petrie
'This is Raban at his best, which is saying a great deal' Ian McEwanSee all Product Description
What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?
Top Customer Reviews
Raban has a sardonic,renaissance mind but also the necessary authorial skills required to make this a stylistic and narrative tour de force.
Passage to Juneau is a personal log, a bleak but often humourous saga in which Raban charts and interprets his inner seascapes and attempts to pilot himself safely through the treacherous tides and shifting currents on which he sails.This is a masterpiece which goes on my shelf next to Peter Matthiessen's, 'The Snow Leopard', and Bruce Chatwin's,'In Patagonia'.
Mr Raban sets off from Seattle with the intention of sailing his yatch single handed to Juneau in Alkaska by a route known as the Inside Passage. A serpentine journey round islands,and reefs. There are tricky, dangerous tidal races, half submerged logs,and sudden violent squalls to be avoided. It is a daunting journey for a middle aged man, who readily admits to being a timid, and nervous sailor. He is out of his depth, and he knows it. Hence the description of the actual sailing is one of constant watchfulness, and anxiety. Hazards real and fanciful keep him in a state of permanent neurosis, constantly looking for a sheltered anchorage where he can ride out the storm or calm his nerves.
Mr Raban has taken a keen interest in the history of the native Americans who live on the west coast of America, and his opinions of their culture and development are scholarly, and humane. He is amused by the contemporary view of the Indians as proto-enviromentalists at one with nature, when they patently were not. Also he has taken a keen interest in the activities of the first European explorers and settlers of the region and makes constant references to the voyage of Captain Vancouver along the same route as his own in 1797.
But the real interest and drama lie not in the voyage or the history but with the author. As the voyage progresses Mr Raban emerges as the real story, not merely it's narrator.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
As good as his previous books even better. Takes hold of your emotions and sails you awayliterally and this said by ex-pro too. Recommend it to all even non sailors. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Lally
Essential reading for those exploring the inside passagePublished 22 months ago by john william beatty
I personally found this book a very meaningful and therapeutic read. A beautifully crafted book, multi-layered and bravely written. Read morePublished on 31 Jan. 2014 by M. D. Budd