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Publisher's Summary

The English had long dreamed of colonizing America, especially after Sir Francis Drake brought home Spanish treasure and dramatic tales from his raids in the Caribbean. Ambitions of finding gold and planting a New World colony seemed within reach when, in 1606, Thomas Smythe extended overseas trade with the launch of the Virginia Company. But from the beginning the American enterprise was a disaster. Within two years, warfare with Indians and dissent among the settlers threatened to destroy Smythe's Jamestown just as it had Raleigh's Roanoke a generation earlier.

To rescue the doomed colonists and restore order, the company chose a new leader, Thomas Gates. Nine ships left Plymouth in the summer of 1609---the largest fleet England had ever assembled---and sailed into the teeth of a storm so violent that "it beat all light from Heaven." The inspiration for Shakespeare's The Tempest, the hurricane separated the flagship from the fleet, driving it onto reefs off the coast of Bermuda - a lucky shipwreck (all hands survived) that proved to be the turning point in the colony's fortune.

©2008 Lorri Glover and Daniel Blake Smith; (P)2008 Tantor

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  • 3.9 out of 5.0
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  • Cheryl
  • Southampton, MA, United States
  • 05-02-10

Great !

Loved it- couldn't put it down !

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

The background for Shakespeare's The Tempest

The actual story of the storm and the shipwreck on Bermuda was fascinating. The beginning and end of the book seemed to lose me because of all the names, dates and facts and shifting between groups of people. I would definitely recommend this book to anyone interested in that time period in history. I am glad that I listened to it. The narrator was good but perhaps could be a bit more animated.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Blake
  • Annapolis, MD, United States
  • 09-06-17

Not The Grade School Version of the First Colony

If you vaguely remember something about the founding of America's first permanent colony at Jamestown, it's likely the grade school textbook or Disney versions about Capt. John Smith and Pocahontas. This book reveals the real story of the colony that came close to being abandoned amidst continuing conflicts and poor leadership. The reading of this book is rather flat, and drags the narrative. There are enough golly gee's in this book to make it a worthwhile read, and frankly, it would be better flipped than listen to this lackluster reading performance.

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  • dj
  • 09-06-17

The WORST reader I have EVER heard

What disappointed you about The Shipwreck That Saved Jamestown?

This is a great story not served well by the mediocre writing of this book, but rendered a much graver disservice by the incredibly HORRIBLE reading - by far the worst I have ever heard, almost un-listenable. The reader has an almost comically bad monotone - where (and why, why, WHY?) did Audible find such a terrible reader?

Would you be willing to try another book from Lorri Glover and Daniel Smith ? Why or why not?

Maybe, but ABSOLUTELY NOT if same reader

How did the narrator detract from the book?

See above - monotone so poor and so difficult to listen to that I was wondering for a moment if it was a joke. Listen to the opening scene of the stereotyped boring reader in the movie 'Good Morning Vietnam' and you will get the idea. In the movie it is used nicely for comic effect. Here it is (inexplicably) for real, and terribly annoying.

What character would you cut from The Shipwreck That Saved Jamestown?

None in particular (except the reader!)

Any additional comments?

This is my first ever review of an audiobook and I very, very rarely write online reviews of anything. But this was so far off the charts and so inexcusable that I have to warn people as a public service. Excuse my strident tone but it is truly exasperating and wrong to allow such poor quality to be offered. That is not to say I am not happy with Audiobooks as a whole- I am, very much so. Books range from good to excellent writing and readers range from good to superb - with this one GLARING exception.

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  • B. Glynn
  • Naperville, IL United States
  • 11-20-12

Broad perspective of the colonization of America

My English ancestors were founders in both the Massachusetts and Plymouth colonies (on which I have thus far focused my research & learning of colonial history). This was the first time I explored the foundation of the Virginia colonies. I was very pleased that this book went into the perspective of the contemporary English thinking of that age. I gained insight into the foundation of all American colonies that I had not gleaned from any other source heretofore.

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