Gipsy Moth Circles the World

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9780071414289: Gipsy Moth Circles the World

The Sailor's Classics library introduces a new generation of readers to the best books ever written about small boats under sail

When 65-year-old Francis Chichester set sail on his solitary eastward journey around the world in 1966, many believed he wouldn't return alive. But when the old man returned nine months later, he had made history's fastest circumnavigation.

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"Sir Francis Chichester has become a genuine hero--perhaps the greatest of the adventurers of his time."--Time

From time immemorial, few narrative genres have had the power to so stir the emotions or captivate the imagination as the true account of a lone adventurer's triumph over the titanic forces of nature. Among the handful of such tales to emerge in the twentieth century, one of the most enduring surely must be Sir Francis Chichester's account of his solitary, nine-month journey around the world in his 53-foot ketch Gipsy Moth IV. The story of how the sixty-five-year-old navigator singlehandedly circumnavigated the globe, the whole way battling hostile seas as well as his boat's numerous design flaws, is a tale of superhuman tenacity and endurance to be read and reread by sailors and armchair adventurers alike.

This volume in The Sailor's Classics restores in its entirety for a new generation of readers Francis Chichester's extraordinarily candid personal account of his adventure. First published in 1967, just months after the completion of Chichester's historic journey, Gipsy Moth Circles the World was an instant international best-seller. It inspired the first solo around-the-world race and remains a timeless testament to the spirit of adventure, and is included on National Geographic Adventure magazine's list of Greatest Adventure Books of All Time.

Francis Chichester's 1967 singlehanded circumnavigation set a blazing record for speed. He completed the voyage with just one stop and 226 days at sea. It was an amazing performance; that he was sixty-five years old made it the more so. Chichester then sat down to write one of the great narratives of modern voyaging.

"A remarkable feat, a moving story of conquest by the unquenchable human spirit, a determined old man's gesture of defiance at the modern world. Such was the voyage; his book is a fine account of it with nothing left out."--Alan Villiers, Saturday Review

"Chichester's voyage was a classic of its kind. His book is a classic document of self-punishing endurance. Chichester was in his own way an explorer in the tradition of Scott and Shackleton. Unlike Scott and Shackleton, in these pages he bares himself and his mood-swings to the reader's gaze, and one is privileged to be his intimate on this loneliest and most harrowing of voyages."--from the introduction by Jonathan Raban

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