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Into the Storm: Two Ships, a Deadly Hurricane, and an Epic Battle for Survival Hardcover – April 24, 2018
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“The story [Tristram] Korten tells is impressively multifaceted, exploring everything from timely issues such as climate change to timeless themes such as man’s struggle against the ocean’s fury.”—Miami New Times
“Korten does an excellent job of describing the nearly indescribable power and ferocity of major hurricanes. . . . Korten brings readers inside the world of the rescue crews whose incredible courage so often makes the difference between life and death in catastrophes like this one. . . . Into the Storm reads like more than just the chronicle of one maritime disaster—and may be a warning claxon against the possibility of more such disasters coming this hurricane season.”—Open Letters Review
“Readers of ocean drama will snap up Korten’s work. . . . [He] gets to tell a complete story; impressively, he keeps it suspenseful.”—The Free Lance-Star
“An incredible story and a first-rate adventure . . . Tristram Korten delivers us into a thrilling and dangerous world, strapping us in beside everyday heroes who confront forces of nature even Hollywood can’t re-create. Into the Storm is a triumph of reporting and you-are-there writing that becomes a deeper tale—with more implications about our own lives—with every chapter.”—Robert Kurson, New York Times bestselling author of Shadow Divers
“Riveting stuff—a terrifying but also inspiring story of disaster and resilience on the high seas. This is as close as I ever need to get to being aboard a ship in a hurricane. Riveting stuff.”—Josh Dean, author of The Taking of K-129
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While this book is a good contrast of two ships – one that survived the storm and one that did not, what makes this book only “good” rather than “great” is the author’s insistence on injecting his personal political views into the conclusions. Instead of analyzing what the two captain and crews did differently to help mariners learn from the mistakes that were made, the author concludes responsibility must be placed on Republicans and global warming. Really?
Here is an excerpt:
“…in the United States, powerful politicians in the Republican Party—congressmen, senators, and governors—refuse to acknowledge the threats of climate change or act in any way to lower carbon emissions, the one thing humans could do to try to offset our contribution to rising global temperatures. They have not engaged in a dialogue about what we should or can do, nor have they made much of an attempt to explain the evidence on which they base their denial. For more than eight years, congressional committees in the House of Representatives that could deal with the issue have routinely prevented federal action on climate change. Throughout his two terms in office, Rick Scott, the Republican governor of Florida—the state most susceptible to rising sea levels as well as hurricanes—prohibited the terms “climate change” and “global warming” from even being used by state agencies. Every passing minute of their inaction increases their responsibility for the safety of first responders and others affected by hurricanes, historic floods, and wildfires.”
The captain of the El Faro made a navigational mistake and literally sailed into the middle of a Category 4 hurricane, rather than away from it, but the author places blame on the Governor of Florida?
If the author had just focused on telling the story, this would have been a great book – but injecting divisive partisan politics into the story significantly detracts from the ultimate conclusions.
If you ever wanted to know more about the Coast Guard's courageous pilots and rescue swimmers, the merchant ships that ply the Caribbean and the horrors of tropical hurricanes, this is a book for you. But really, any reader will genuinely appreciate the loving research and meticulous detail of this modern day, suspense story.
The electrifying, rescue mission detailed mid-book will leave you gnawing your nails. And the last informative chapter explaining the sinister, climate changes taking place and predicted to soon accelerate is a praiseworthy conclusion to this remarkable book. I envision an upcoming movie; a high quality, Hollywood thriller.
I found the information about ship inspections being performed by organizations funded by shipping companies particularly interesting considering that the FAA was criticized for the same thing concerning aircraft and the Boeing max inspections.
Very good information about shipping in general, highly recommended. Easy reading.
If he had left that out I would have finished reading the book!!!!!
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One small point was there were no pictures of the Ships and ,perhaps the crews and certainly the impressive Helo and rescue swimmers who enabled such a very dangerous rescue thereby saving the lives of those in such peril.
We needed to see these brave men and maybe the doomed ships.