book: At the Mercy of the Sea by John Kretschmer

My birthday was last month and I received a few interestingly titled books.  Well I grabbed one of these books today as I headed to my local mechanic to get some service done on my truck.  I chose “At the Mercy of the Sea: the true story of three sailors in a Caribbean Hurricane” by John Kretschmer.

Lenny south of Saint Croix at its peak intensity

The book takes place in November of 1999.  The protagonist is Hurricane Lenny.  “Lenny was the strongest Atlantic hurricane ever recorded in November, and quite unusual in that it moved west-to-east across the Caribbean”.  It is remarkable timing that I should have started reading this book because right now we have Tropical Storm Ida moving in the Gulf of Mexico.

The book has a little more than two hundred pages.  And within the two hours of reading it I read almost half of this book.  I felt as I was reading it that I was becoming apart of something bigger than myself.

At the Mercy of the SeaAquatic suspense always draws me in for it usually defies conventional wisdom.  Anyone who has spent time on the water knows that boaters are a guest on the back of a nameless leviathan.  Hurricane Lenny is the leviathan in this book and he is as unique as the three men that were solo sailing.  This is a book about the experience of sailing through a category four hurricane.  And I highly recommend it to my fellow kayakers.  It is full of character development and suspense.  I could taste the saltwater, feel the wind, and I shared in the fatigue of Carl Wake, Steve Rigby, and Guillaume Llobregat, as they sailed.

I hope you enjoy this book as much as I did.  – Jeff

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