Down to the Sea in Ships - Book Group Oct 2022 discussion thread

8 watchers
Nov 2022
9:37pm, 24 Nov 2022
37,266 posts
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I'm not a great non-fiction reader but this was a book I looked forward to picking up each night. I liked the snippets of information woven into the narrative - the fact that sailing ships were early victims of U-boat torpedoes in the First World War, for example. I agree with Columba that some of it was a bit over-written but not enough to annoy. I was another who would have liked to see some photos and maps to flesh out the prose. A good solid 9 from me, and thank you for choosing it Fetch!
Dec 2022
9:18pm, 28 Dec 2022
13,275 posts
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Little Nemo
I found the style a bit difficult to start with. It seemed a bit flowery and I wasn't sure about the feelings he attributed to the other people on board. It read better after I got used to it and it was fascinating learning about the movement of goods. It was more chaotic than I thought it would be and it seemed crazy that the same stuff was being imported/exported rather than people buying local stuff. Also crazy that the companies are able to pay people depending on where they come from rather than fairer pay.

Some of the historical snippets were fascinating but some were quite brutal and disturbing. I know we probably need to know this but it made some sections very bleak.

I mostly enjoyed the first part but the second part was a bit repetitious. I feel I learned quite a lot so I'm glad I finished it.

I gave this book a 6.
1 Jan
10:04am, 1 Jan 2023
28,577 posts
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I have finally finished this, after a reading hiatus of several months. I mostly liked it - fascinating info about the volume of goods that gets transported across the globe. A wee bit too long, with a feeling of repetition. I enjoyed some of the vocabulary describing the sea, although some felt a bit forced.


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About This Thread

Maintained by McGoohan
Ar, chosen by Fetch hisself. This book be lifted from the depths of Davy Jones' locker, so it be. A tale of daring on the high seas of the Spanish Main. Horatio Clare, captain of the fair lateen-rigged caravel Hispaniola ... [checks notes]... stows away... [checks notes again]... travels on some Maersk container vessels in search of pirate gold...


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