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Publisher's Summary

“An intense, immersive deep dive into a wild, dangerous, and unknown world, written with the pace and appeal of a great thriller. This is nonfiction at its very best.” (Lee Child, New York Times best-selling author of the Jack Reacher novels)

The true story of two doomed ships and a daring search-and-rescue operation that shines a light on the elite Coast Guard swimmers trained for the most dangerous ocean missions 

In late September 2015, Hurricane Joaquin swept past the Bahamas and swallowed a pair of cargo vessels in its destructive path: El Faro, a 790-foot American behemoth with a crew of 33, and the Minouche, a 230-foot freighter with a dozen sailors aboard. From the parallel stories of these ships and their final journeys, Tristram Korten weaves a remarkable tale of two veteran sea captains from very different worlds, the harrowing ordeals of their desperate crews, and the Coast Guard’s extraordinary battle against a storm that defied prediction.

When the Coast Guard received word from Captain Renelo Gelera that the Minouche was taking on water on the night of October 1, the servicemen on duty helicoptered through Joaquin to the sinking ship. Rescue swimmer Ben Cournia dropped into the sea - in the middle of a raging tropical cyclone, in the dark - and churned through the monstrous swells, loading survivors into a rescue basket dangling from the helicopter as its pilot struggled against the tempest. With pulsating narrative skill in the tradition of Sebastian Junger and Jon Krakauer, Korten recounts the heroic efforts by Cournia and his fellow guardsmen to haul the Minouche's crew to safety.

Tragically, things would not go as well for Captain Michael Davidson and El Faro. Despite exhaustive searching by her would-be rescuers, the loss of the vessel became the largest US maritime disaster in decades. As Korten narrates the ships’ fates, with insights drawn from insider access to crew members, Coast Guard teams, and their families, he delivers a moving and propulsive story of men in peril, the international brotherhood of mariners, and the breathtaking power of nature.

©2018 Tristram Korten (P)2018 Random House Audio

Critic Reviews

“An incredible story and 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 best-selling author of Shadow Divers)

“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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