The Log from the Sea of Cortez

Narrated by: Joe Barrett
Length: 11 hrs and 46 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (312 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

The Log from the Sea of Cortez is the exciting day-by-day account of Steinbeck's trip to the Gulf of California with biologist Ed Ricketts. Drawn from the longer Sea of Cortez, it is a wonderful combination of science, philosophy, and high-spirited adventure.

©1979 Elaine Steinbeck, John Steinbeck IV, and Thom Steinbeck (P)2012 Penguin

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Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Beautiful Book

This book should be treasured as much for it's fascinating glimpse into pre War Mexico along the sea, but also for Steinbeck's musings on the human condition. Just when you think the book will be bogged down with tedious scientific discovery, Steinbeck makes bursts forth with some keen observation or comparison on human nature. Having spent an abundance of time along the shore of the Sea of Cortez, I knew I would enjoy this book. However, I had no idea going into this that it would prove to be one of my favorite books of all time.

10 people found this helpful

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Devoted Steinbeck fans only.

This book is a fascinating recount of an enviable voyage through the gulf of California, but it loaded too heavily with detailed accounts of aquatic life and sailing equipment for anyone but an avid Steinbeck readers to really enjoy. Having said that, the beautiful account of the Californian and Mexican coast is truly captivating, and the trademark Steinbeck tangents into observations about life and humanity are worth the effort. Unfortunately, it never quite reaches the level of Travels with Charlie, a book to which I would direct those listeners who want to be whisked away on a journey, but who haven't the patience for several hours of talk about isopods.

Joe Barrett needs no praise from me as he is one of the most prolific audiobook artists around, and his performance here is second to none.

12 people found this helpful

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John's tribute to his friend Ed.

This book is full of science about aquatic life. It is filled with information that only sailors might understand, and it is more of a journal than a book. It doesn't feel polished. And yet it is wonderful! And I think it is wonderful because it is told with so much love and respect. For the reader it feels like a journey that John is thrilled to be on and equally happy to share. It feels a bit like a love letter to his friend Ed Ricketts. Cannery Row just moved higher up my TBR list!

I have become a huge fan of John Steinbeck over the past few weeks and each book I read solidifies that more for me. I am a fan of the writer and of the man. His books make me feel like I know him -- and I like the man I know. I wish I could have known the man in the real world. He tells the story of Americana with love and respect but never shies away from the hardships.

The Log from the Sea of Cortez is a strong, solid 4.5 stars.

5 people found this helpful

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The Log From the Sea of Cortez

This is by far my favorite book. I have read this countless times and each time is as good as the last. I would recommend this book to philosophers, sailors, marine biology enthusiasts, and any Steinbeck fan in general. I found myself a different person after encountering this book. 10/10.

6 people found this helpful

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I’m stunned by this man’s talent

John Steinbeck is the most deserving of Nobel prize winners in literature, and this is from someone who read several other laureates like Nageeb Magouz in his original Arabic, Saul Bellow, Earnest Hemingway, William Faulkner, Albert Camus, Gabriella Garcia Marquez, Alexander Solzinetsin, among other great Russians.
In one simple word, this is a man humanity should be very proud of for centuries to come.

2 people found this helpful

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Sea of Cortez

I enjoyed this book. The performance is very well done. I learned so much about John Steinbeck and the creatures that live in the sea.

1 person found this helpful

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Lots of marine info sprinkled

Not fond of Mr. Ricketts section, although well written.

Lovely description of Baja California s a nd Sea of Cortez

1 person found this helpful

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Different than most Steinbeck’s but great

The additional bit about Ed Rickets “DOC “is worth the whole book loved this one. Not like a lot of Steinbeck’s books but a must if you love his work.

1 person found this helpful

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well written

this account of the search for marine animals is much more than a scientific journal.it is a story about personalities and adventures with humorous anecdotes and philosophical musings. I enjoyed it. there is another part of the book which contains his description of his friend, the marine biologist Ed ricketts. As a female, I did not find ricketts character appealing. but it was all interesting

1 person found this helpful

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Great JS writing interspersed with biology

If were to have read this book, the detailed biology probably would have caused me to put it down after an hour or two. When listened through Joe Barrett’s most excellent narration, the biology lessons were interesting (to me), but it was Steinbeck’s descriptions of the characters and adventure that caused me to look forward to having the time to listen to this wonderful book.

1 person found this helpful