"There is nothing imaginary about Junger's book; it is all terrifyingly, awesomely real." —Los Angeles Times
It was the storm of the century, boasting waves over one hundred feet high—a tempest created by so rare a combination of factors that meteorologists deemed it "the perfect storm." In a book that has become a classic, Sebastian Junger explores the history of the fishing industry, the science of storms, and the candid accounts of the people whose lives the storm touched. The Perfect Storm is a real-life thriller that makes us feel like we've been caught, helpless, in the grip of a force of nature beyond our understanding or control.
Winner of the American Library Association's 1998 Alex Award.
In meteorological jargon, a "perfect storm" is one unsurpassed in ferocity and duration--a description that fits the so-called Halloween Gale of October 1991 in the western Atlantic. Junger, who has written for American Heritage and Outside, masterfully handles his account of that storm and its devastation. He begins with a look at the seedy town of Gloucester, Mass., which has been sliding downhill ever since the North Atlantic fishing industry declined, then focuses his attention on the captain and the five-man crew of the Andrea Gail, a swordfishing vessel. He then charts the storm--particularly formidable because three storms had converged from the south, the west and the north--that created winds up to 100 miles an hour and waves that topped 110 feet. He reconstructs what the situation must have been aboard the ship during the final hours of its losing battle with the sea, and the moments when it went down with the loss of all hands. He recaps the courageous flight of an Air National Guard helicopter, which had to be ditched in the ocean--leaving one man dead while the other four were rescued--then returns to Gloucester and describes the reaction to the loss of the Andrea Gail. Even with the inclusion of technical information, this tale of the "Storm of the Century" is a thrilling read and seems a natural for filming. BOMC main selection and QPB selection; Reader's Digest Today's Best Nonfiction selection; first serial to Esquire; $235,000 paperback floor; simultaneous Random House Audio; British rights: Fourth Estate.
Customer ReviewsSee All
Terrific Nonfiction work
Really interesting book that showsexactly what life is like for a fisherman and why he or she would risk their lives doing this difficult work. Junger gives you an idea of what the men who died were like and why they needed to fish. Gives you a look into who the fishermen were and why you would be sorry about their passing.
The Perfect Documentary
My father loaned me his copy of this book a number of years ago and, although I always wanted to have a copy of my own, I never got around to getting it. That is, until it got released on the iBooks store. The book still reads like it did for me the first time. Very well researched, both exciting and terrifying, an honor to the living and very respectful of the dead. I never saw the movie, but it's been my experience that movies can never do justice to books like this. Read the book!
Read this book for class!👌🚢⚓
In meteorology class we are reading this and I just can't get focused and interested! There's just a lot of skipping back and forth through time periods and it's hard to focus on it. Some parts are really good and some parts are really boring! The actually story, not the explanations of things, is interesting though! I'd give the movie 5 ⭐! 👍