Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Book Review: 'The Perfect Storm' by Sebastian Junger

✰✰✰✰ When the storm of the century hit, the Andrea Gail was on its way home with a boatload of fish. Unfortunately, the Andrea Gail was in the wrong place at the wrong time as every single factor precipitating this situation had to come together perfectly. The Perfect Storm takes the reader to the very center of the storm with waves over 100 feet high. We meet the crew through their family and friends and learn about dangers of the fishing industry. While we'll never know exactly what happened aboard the Andrea Gail, Junger made every effort to craft an authentic and engaging read.

The Bottom Line: Survival stories are a popular topic and this book definitely keeps the reader on the edge of their seat. It's a fast-paced read with lots of information. Highly recommended for fans of adventure, survival, suspense, and tragedy.

Book Club Notes: This book was the topic of a brand new book club featuring nonfiction books and the films based on those books. Club members can either read the book, watch the film, or both. It was fascinating to note the differences between the two formats, and surprisingly every member chose to read the book. About half of us watched the film as well, and we noted the addition of a character (Irene) in the film. The average rating for this book/film was 4.25 out of 5. Most of us really enjoyed the book even though it's been out for around twenty years.

Our discussion focused on the fishing industry, which most of us knew little about. We also discussed the weather and the rescue efforts. Additionally, we discussed how the author crafted this book by using accounts from people who had been in similar situations to those he was writing about. We also took the time to compare/contrast the book to the movie. Those of us who had both read the book and watched the film thought the movie adaptation was very well done. This book is highly recommended for book clubs.

Discussion questions can be found at Reading Group Guides. Finally, we also discussed some movie trivia, which can be found here.

Details: The Perfect Storm: A True Story of Men Against the Sea by Sebastian Junger. Paperback published by W. W. Norton & Co. in 2009. 233 p. ISBN: 978-0-393-33701-3

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