Bound for Distant Seas

A Voyage Alone to Asia Aboard the 28-Foot Sailboat Atom
Narrated by: Nick O'Kelly
Length: 13 hrs and 12 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (176 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Bound for Distant Seas begins sailing author James Baldwin's epic tale of his second circumnavigation. His story is seasoned by his adventures during his first circumnavigation in 1984-86 as told in Across Islands and Oceans. Alone with little money aboard Atom, his now-engineless 28-foot sailboat, James embarks on his odyssey without the comforts and equipment most sailors consider essential. Challenging himself to live as closely with the sea as possible, the author sets sail in 1987 from Florida, bound for new adventures on the distant shores of Asia. He does not return home again for 15 years.

In this paean to the sea and foreign lands, the author recounts the best and worst of life on the ocean, visits to far-flung islands, and adventures amid throngs of humanity in some of the world's most densely populated cities. This unvarnished physical and philosophical saga includes encounters with dead-eyed bureaucrats, native angels of mercy, newly discovered WWII wreckage, fellow expat adventurers, rogues and misfits.

The journey takes many unplanned turns as the author faces near misses with lurking dangers, hikes across islands, finds temporary employment ashore, and immerses himself in foreign cultures. Along the way he is tested by sea and society, and he ultimately discovers the priceless treasures of heart and mind that he seeks. James invites you to come aboard Atom for the journey of a lifetime.

©2015 James Baldwin (P)2015 David N. Olberding

What listeners say about Bound for Distant Seas

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    4 out of 5 stars

Cool sailing story

I like the start to middle very much. As it got closer to the end it got more preachy.

2 people found this helpful

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Sailing and social commentary

Having listened to this book and it's entirety, I find that the adventure that the author has penned is definitely worthy of a listen. I think that the author is a very deep and intelligent man who wants to open the world that he has sailed to others on the same level. I am certain that his experiences in each of these places touched him greatly. Having spent quite a bit of time in the Philippines, I understood so much of what he spoke about. I am fascinated by the people there and the resilience. Descriptions in Thailand and the Philippines of the subjugation by predatory sex tourists was quite enlightening.

I think that the only negative that I found in the actual reading of the book were some of the pronunciations were not very close to the actual local pronunciations.

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More than just a sailing story

James Baldwin is a great sailor, but he is also a great writer. Cruising is 5% sailing and 95% being there, and James' book is just that. His book makes me more confident as I prepare to live my own circumnavigation, and inspired to live my own life.

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great!!!!

very cool story. very well done...
cant wait to read about the remainder of the voyage

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  • MS
  • 04-13-16

Great for the armchair sailor

Great narrative and description of the challenges of voyaging under sail. A few mispronounced words by the narrator. This was a good sequel to the author's other book, Across Islands and Oceans.

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Well narrated, aside from one fact...

The story was excellent. The narrator read the story well, aside from not being familiar with the Philippines or the Filipino language. Many, many words were pronounced incorrectly and I found that part annoying.

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Great book

This was a awesome book. Great stories and adventures. But if compared to his other 2 books I would say this is my 3ed favorite. It just doesn’t compare to is first book, which is the best or his second. All great books though.

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Is this non fiction or fiction

Couldn’t make up my mind was it the poor narration or lame story line hopefully it gets better 😆🤔

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great book! very detailed!!

great nautical book. great writing and oration! very much enjoyed hearing about sailing and the authors experiences

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Fantastic book

I loved this book! Wonderfully written! What a incredible journey. Extremely easy to listen to. The adventure captured and held my atention right to the end. I just finished it and I've started listening to it again from the beginning. A great thanks to Mr. Baldwin for allowing us to come along with him.

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  • J. Wexler
  • 06-21-19

Easy, fun, humorous, no nonsense

Well written and well read. The author doesn't pull punches in pointing out specific persons and companies. He gives a great sense of cruising without an engine.

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  • Andrew
  • 06-07-17

A great account of a man, people and the world!

Nice work in compiling this book James! It is inspiring and moving! It has me eager to hear about your future journeys and motivated to create my own!