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Publisher's Summary

Man’s struggle against the sea is a theme that has created some of the world’s most exciting stories. Now, in the tradition of Moby Dick comes a New York Times best seller destined to become a modern classic. Written by journalist Sebastian Junger, The Perfect Storm combines an intimate portrait of a small fishing crew with fascinating scientific data about boats and weather systems. In late October, North Atlantic seas are unpredictable. Still, one last good swordfish catch is a chance to start the winter with a fat wallet. As Captain Billy Tyne steers his 72-foot longboat Andrea Gail toward the Grand Banks, growing weather fronts are moving toward the same waters. The Andrea Gail is sailing into the storm of the century, one with 100 mile per hour winds and waves cresting over 110 feet. As each man on the boat faces this ultimate foe, Sebastian Junger gives the account an immediacy that fills The Perfect Storm with suspense and authenticity. Narrator Richard M. Davidson’s reading adds further drama to this unforgettable sea adventure. An interview with the author concludes the audiobook.

©1997 Sebastian Junger (P)1998 Recorded Books

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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Fact is better than Fiction

Any additional comments?

My favorite thing about Sebastian Junger's book "The Perfect Storm" was that it wasn't fictionalized in any way, which can make the task of reconstructing the last few days of six men on a fishing vessel very difficult. But through a thoughtful examination of the events on and off of the Andrea Gail, Junger recreates the gripping story of what happened in late October 1991. It was known as the Perfect Storm - a freak meteorological marriage of two weather events that culminated in wave heights over 100 feet, sustained winds of 75mph, and over $200 million in damage along the eastern seaboard.

Great narration and an interesting, hair-raising story.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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Riveting Book, Mediocre Narration

Would you try another book from Sebastian Junger and/or Richard Davidson?

I recommend other work by Sebastian Junger. I would have to take Davidson on a case by case basis.

What other book might you compare The Perfect Storm to and why?

In the Heart of the Sea for the historic background to Atlantic coastal fishing and as a compelling story in it's own right.

Would you be willing to try another one of Richard Davidson’s performances?

I'd be hesitant.

Any additional comments?

Please do not prejudge the book if you have seen the movie. The two do not compare.

9 of 11 people found this review helpful

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Puts The Movie In The Shade Without A Doubt!

I will never look at the fish on my plate in the same way again. Of course I am sure that that logically we are fully aware of how our fish gets from the ocean to our kitchens however personally I live in my own 'La la land' as my personal fisherman is the yellow PVC clad Gorton's fisherman.

I really wish that I had read the book before seeing the movie as no matter how much I tried the movie kept on 'popping up' into my head. However I did try and listen to it with more of a 'blank canvas attitude'.

What a superb read. Not only a story of brave men, the people who love them and their sad fate but interspersed with so much information as to how these types of natural disasters occur.

Sebastian Junger gives a description of the drowning process so poignant yet quite clinical. Answers many questions.

Richard Davidson gives a superb performance that keeps you invested from the first word to the very last.

There is a bonus interview at the end with the author Sebastian Junger. Really interesting stuff.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Great story, better than the movie

This is one of the few books I have listened to several times because it is so well researched and the narrator is excellent! Jungar did a great job with this story and it will always be one of the classic true stories.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Best as a Listen


There are some books and stories that work best for me on Audible. Frank Mueller's narration of Erich Maria Remarque's"All Quiet on the Western Front" (1927/1929) was one - I somehow managed to miss it as assigned high school reading, and had no luck trying to actually read the text. I couldn't follow it until I listened. Stephen King's 2010 "A Good Marriage" was a so-so-so novella narrator Jessica Hecht turned into a wicked, memorable tease in 2014. Now, I'm adding Sebastian Junger's 1997's "The Perfect Storm: A True Story of Men Against the Sea" (2014 Audible) to my list.

"The Perfect Storm" was, at the time it was written, a newer approach to writing scientific history. Junger approached a historically significant natural phenomenon by telling the stories of those who lived through it - and those who did not. The book is liberally salted with meteorological history and contains thorough discussions of how storms develop and are sustained. It's interwoven with the personal histories of the people that sailed the seas during that epic storm, and the loved ones they left pacing on widow's walks.

Swordfishing is a difficult life, and the crew of the Andrea Gail worked hard and played hard. Junger traces the lives of the crew members, concentrating especially on Bobby Shatford and his girlfriend, Chris Cotter. Their volatile relationship was a good analogy for the coming storm.

Junger's writing can be dry, but Richard Davidson's narration made the statistics and history lively. Meteorological terms that were unfamiliar to me slipped off his tongue with ease.

I will no longer feel guilty, thinking that I really should finish "The Perfect Storm" every time I dust the paperback that's been sitting on my bookshelf for more than a decade.

[If this review helped, please press YES. Thanks!]

19 of 28 people found this review helpful

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Good if you are interested in ships and fishing

The Audible version has an interview with the author at the end where he talks about how this book started out as a chapter, then got turned into a magazine article and then into a 300 something page book. He mentioned the trouble of filling all these pages with the story and in order to do so expanded on several topics e.g. fishing history, oceanography, marine biology, hypothermia etc. And this is where I had troubles with the book. It's very well researched but it circles around a topic that I am just not that interested in.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

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A Truth Based Informative Tale

I have never read another book with the format this one is written in and the factual basis of this story is absolutely gripping.

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a really intense oceanography textbook

Technical non-fiction that has awesome moments of humanity and drama.

Definitely for scientific-minded people. If you are interested in the extreme conditions humans have endured to get us here then you won't be disappointed.

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great book!

I've met Sebestian and spent some exteneded time with him as I coordinated a speaking engagement with him. He is great and I'm a fan of his work.

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Outstanding and informative read.

This is not just an interesting story, it's very informative. Very well researched, I learned a lot about commercial fishing, emergency response and the Northeast high seas.
I recommend it for anybody interested in the ocean, fishing, boating or meteorology. And excellent read.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 11-30-16

Awesome

This is one of the best books I have ever heard. so much info it is out this world!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 05-28-17

Great listen

I enjoyed the film but the book opened up a whole new world. Well paced, exciting and very informative listen!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Perry
  • 08-31-18

Fantastic

I have listened to this audiobook several times and will listen to it again still