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Editorial Reviews

Joshua Slocum spent just enough time on dry land to find a wife. Together, they had seven children, all of them born either at sea or in a foreign port. Captain Slocum may have been the most committed sailor since Odysseus, and Sailing Alone Around the World is his finest testament.

In 1895, Slocum boarded his 36-foot vessel named The Spray and set out on a course that would last three years and cover over 46,000 miles. He relates his experiences of Indian attacks, pirate attacks, loneliness, and Transvaal President Paul Kruger, who still believed the world was flat. Performed by the friendly-voiced Nelson Runger, some consider Sailing Alone Around the World to be the best travelogue of all time.

Publisher's Summary

In 1895, when Captain Joshua Slocum completed the first solo circumnavigation on his 37-foot sloop, the Spray, no one believed it could be done. This firsthand account of Captain Slocum's remarkable voyage - 3 years and 46,000 miles - is full of adventures, dangers, and triumphs. Stormy seas, hostile natives, Moorish pirates, and even a bizarre meeting with President Paul Kruger of the Transvaal, who insisted that Slocum could never have sailed "around the world," since everyone with the meanest intelligence knew the world was flat, make up the fabric of the most wonderful travelogue of all.

Critic Reviews

"The classic of its kind." (Travel World)

What members say

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  • Overall
  • Sean
  • Port Orange, FL, USA
  • 11-09-04

Around the World

This book is an adventure into the mind of a man, more than the world. While many aspects recount the tales from his adventures, most tell of feelings, thoughts, and fears.
At times, the book itself is hard to follow, but in the end, most is understood. Be sure to have a general knowlage of sailing and geography before taking this book out to sea.

10 of 10 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • memobug
  • Silicon Valley, CA
  • 12-04-07

Interesting read but poorly recorded

There were two versions of this recording on Audible. I thought this narrator had more of the vocal character of an old sea dog, so I paid more for this particular version.

It was well read, but the audio quality leaves something to be desired. The dynamics are off, and it sounds like audio tape.

The story itself is interesting and well worth the time.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall


If you love the ocean and admire those who have challenged it, you'll love this book. It is amazing what this man did in his time. It is great for the sailing story alone, but the character of the man who made the voyage is equalling compelling, you come away with an admiration for his view of the world. The language is very authentic, something I found interesting but it does take some time time to get used to. But, be patient, it is worth it. The narrator was very good, very even handed in his delivery.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

flashbacks to "The Old Man and the Sea"

A worthwhile escape onto a boat sailing across the world. Every time I stopped listening to this book, I couldn't wait to start listening again. You should definitely lookup some general sailing terms before listening as suggested in another review.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

What else can you say about Joshua Slocum,

To me clearly the best narration available on one of the very few books I ever come back for another round.

  • Overall
  • Robert
  • Yamhill, OR, United States
  • 01-26-11

Wishing for more

A knowledge of sailing and and a map at hand might be helpful but not essential. While the author is a sailor by profession, the book is well written by any standard. The book moves along much faster than one might expect for a boat that only makes about 7 knots. While a journey around the world alone might not seem such a trivial matter, the author makes it almost seem so. The author must have had a great deal more to write than what is contained in this book. One has to wonder if the author abridged the work by design or perhaps it was the choice of the publisher's. For a journey around the world, the book seemed short but then some would say that the mark of a good book is one that leaves the reader wishing for more.

2 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • David
  • Colchester, VT, USA
  • 09-21-06

Kept My attention

I love this book. I actually was able to focus on every word and found the story and the language enjoyable.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful