Cover image for The perfect storm
The perfect storm
Junger, Sebastian.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Prince Frederick, Md. : Recorded Books, [1998]

Physical Description:
8 audio discs (9 hr., 30 min.) : digital ; 4 3/4 in.
A book taut with the fury of the elements which depicts the courage, terror, and awe which the men of the fishing vessel "Andrea Gail" faced as they were caught in the grip of a savage force of nature.
General Note:
An unabridged recording of the book entitled The perfect storm, a true story of men against the sea.

In container (16 cm.).

"Unabridged Nonfiction."--Cover.

"With tracks every 3 minutes for easy book marking."--Cover.

Compact disc.
Corporate Subject:
Format :
Audiobook on CD


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
QC945 .J66 1998C DISC 8 Adult Audiobook on CD Audiobooks
QC945 .J66 1998C CD 8 Adult Audiobook on CD Audiobooks

On Order



Man's struggle against the sea is a theme that has created some of the world's most exciting stories. Now, in the tradition of Moby Dick comes a New York Times best-seller destined to become a modern classic. Written by journalist Sebastian Junger, The Perfect Storm combines an intimate portrait of a small fishing crew with fascinating scientific data about boats and weather systems. In late October, North Atlantic seas are unpredictable. Still, one last good swordfish catch is a chance to start the winter with a fat wallet. As Captain Billy Tyne steers his 72-foot longboat Andrea Gail toward the Grand Banks, growing weather fronts are moving toward the same waters. The Andrea Gail is sailing into the storm of the century, one with 100 mile per hour winds and waves cresting over 110 feet. As each man on the boat faces this ultimate foe, Sebastian Junger gives the account an immediacy that fills The Perfect Storm with suspense and authenticity. Narrator Richard M Davidson's reading adds further drama to this unforgettable sea adventure. An interview with the author condudes the audiobook.

Author Notes

Sebastian Junger was born in 1962 in Belmont, Massachusetts. He received his BA degree from Wesleyan University in Cultural Anthropology in 1984. He is a freelance journalist who writes for numerous magazines, including Outside, American Heritage, Men's Journal, and the New York Times Magazine. As an underemployed journalist who assigned himself stories and worked as a stringer for the Associated Press in Bosnia, Junger was fascinated by the dangers that people face regularly while doing ordinary jobs.

Junger was working as a climber for a tree removal service when the storm occurred that provided the inspiration for his first book. The Perfect Storm (1997) is a carefully researched account of the wreck of the swordfishing boat Andrea Gail, The wreck took place during what one meteorologist called a "perfect storm"--a storm with the worst possible conditions. In order to relate the story of a disaster that left no survivors and had no eyewitnesses, Junger used a combination of sound research, technical detail, and personal insight to reconstruct the final hours. After the publication of this book he was nicknamed the new Hemingway. In 2000, this book was made into a film starring George Clooney and Mark Wahlberg.

He wrote several books such as War which is about his time spent with a U.S. Army platoon in Afghanistan. At the Sundance Film Festival in 2010 his documentary Restrepo won Grand Jury Prize for a domestic documentary.

Junger's book, Tribe, made the New York Times Bestseller list in 2016.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 4

Booklist Review

*Starred Review* Junger's most recent book, War (2010), which recounts his experiences with combat troops in war-torn Afghanistan, embodies both his ongoing fascination with life on the tip of the spear and his public image as a square-jawed danger-seeker. But it was The Perfect Storm (1997), written while he was a freelance tree-climber with only a notepad and an idea, that put him on the map. The outline is well known because the events made the news, because the book became a best-seller, and because the book became a major motion picture with A-list talent. In October 1991, a freak convergence of weather a storm from the west, a cold front from the north, and a hurricane from the south resulted in the Halloween Storm, a once-in-a-century gale that wreaked havoc on the North Atlantic. As befits a story so huge, Junger follows a diverse array of people through it, including fishermen, sailors, and rescue personnel. But it's the story of the doomed swordfish boat Andrea Gail, whose crew was never found, that is the most compelling, and it is here that Junger shows the strength of his craft. In re-creating what might have happened to the six-man crew, he seamlessly weaves known facts with everything from interviews with survivors of other storms to explanations of fishing-boat architecture and the science behind drowning, with results so unforgettable that we can well imagine their final moments. But the Andrea Gail is not the whole story. There are other sword boats, the beleaguered sloop Satori with its crew of three, and a diverse array of rescuers whose actions are nothing short of heroic. There is a wealth of information here about the practice and business of fishing and about weather, sea, and people, but Junger shapes it all with an almost novelistic sense of pace and timing. Like Jon Krakauer's Into Thin Air (1997), about disaster on Mount Everest, it's a thrilling, sobering, and extremely accessible book that may well serve as the point of entry for readers curious about its subject. Rarely are works of nonfiction so deeply affecting.--Graff, Keir Copyright 2010 Booklist

Publisher's Weekly Review

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. (May) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Library Journal Review

Toward the end of October 1991, a storm of colossal scale plagued much of the East Coast with devastating floods. At sea, the New England fishing boat Andrea Gail suddenly found herself in the very center of the tempest. A Perfect Storm chronicles the boat's ill-fated voyage in horrifying detail. The boat is armed with the latest navigational tools and signaling systems, but the wind-swept sea brushes all precautions aside with careless ease. The boat and its crew disappear suddenly and completely. At times, the author seems to dwell unnecessarily on gruesome detail. In one passage, he discusses the physiology of drowning at excruciating and tasteless length. But for the most part, this is a thrilling and suspenseful tale, full of fine writing and haunting images. The abridgment seems to depersonalize the Andrea Gail's crew while ironically accentuating the animal-like fury of the storm. The listener is left with a clear and intimate portrait of the storm's "personality" and a mere shadowy sketch of the tragedy's victims. Stanley Tucci's measured and compassionate narration is uniformly excellent. Recommended for public libaries.‘John Owen, Advanced Micro Devices Technical Lib., Sunnyvale, Cal. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

School Library Journal Review

The powerfully destructive forces of nature that created the Halloween Gale of 1991 are made vivid through interviews with survivors, families, and Coast Guard rescue crews.True adventure at its best (Nov.) (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.



The Perfect Storm A True Story of Men Against the Sea Gloucester, Mass., 1991 It's no fish ye're buying, it's men's lives. --Sir Walter Scott The Antiquary, Chapter 11 A soft fall rain slips down through the trees and the smell of ocean is so strong that it can almost be licked off the air. Trucks rumble along Rogers Street and men in t-shirts stained with fishblood shout to each other from the decks of boats. Beneath them the ocean swells up against the black pilings and sucks back down to the barnacles. Beer cans and old pieces of styrofoam rise and fall and pools of spilled diesel fuel undulate like huge iridescent jellyfish. The boats rock and creak against their ropes and seagulls complain and hunker down and complain some more. Across Rogers Street and around the back of the Crow's Nest, through the door and up the cement stairs, down the carpeted hallway and into one of the doors on the left, stretched out on a double bed in room number twenty-seven with a sheet pulled over him, Bobby Shatford lies asleep. He's got one black eye. There are beer cans and food wrappers scattered around the room and a duffel bag on the floor with t-shirts and flannel shirts and blue jeans spilling out. Lying asleep next to him is his girlfriend, Christina Cotter. She's an attractive woman in her early forties with rust-blond hair and a strong, narrow face. There's a TV in the room and a low chest of drawers with a mirror on top of it and a chair of the sort they have in high-school cafeterias. The plastic cushion cover has cigarette burns in it. The window looks out on Rogers Street where trucks ease themselves into fish-plant bays. It's still raining. Across the street is Rose Marine, where fishing boats fuel up, and across a small leg of water is the State Fish Pier, where they unload their catch. The State Pier is essentially a huge parking lot on pilings, and on the far side, across another leg of water, is a boatyard and a small park where mothers bring their children to play. Looking over the park on the corner of Haskell Street is an elegant brick house built by the famous Boston architect, Charles Bulfinch. It originally stood on the corner of Washington and Summer Streets in Boston, but in 1850 it was jacked up, rolled onto a barge, and transported to Gloucester. That is where Bobby's mother, Ethel, raised four sons and two daughters. For the past fourteen years she has been a daytime bartender at the Crow's Nest. Ethel's grandfather was a fisherman and both her daughters dated fishermen and all four of the sons fished at one point or another. Most of them still do. The Crow's Nest windows face east into the coming day over a street used at dawn by reefer trucks. Guests don't tend to sleep late. Around eight o'clock in the morning, Bobby Shatford struggles awake. He has flax-brown hair, hollow cheeks, and a sinewy build that has seen a lot of work. In a few hours he's due on a swordfishing boat named the Andrea Gail, which is headed on a one-month trip to the Grand Banks. He could return with $5,000 in his pocket or he could not return at all. Outside, the rain drips on. Chris groans, opens her eyes, and squints up at him. One of Bobby's eyes is the color of an overripe plum. Did I do that? Yeah. Jesus. She considers his eye for a moment. How did I reach that high? They smoke a cigarette and then pull on their clothes and grope their way downstairs. A metal fire door opens onto a back alley, they push it open and walk around to the Rogers Street entrance. The Crow's Nest is a block-long faux-Tudor construction across from the J. B. Wright Fish Company and Rose Marine. The plate-glass window in front is said to be the biggest barroom window in town. That's quite a distinction in a town where barroom windows are made small so that patrons don't get thrown through them. There's an old pool table, a pay phone by the door, and a horseshoe-shaped bar. Budweiser costs a dollar seventy-five, but as often as not there's a fisherman just in from a trip who's buying for the whole house. Money flows through a fisherman like water through a fishing net; one regular ran up a $4,000 tab in a week. Bobby and Chris walk in and look around. Ethel's behind the bar, and a couple of the town's earlier risers are already gripping bottles of beer. A shipmate of Bobby's named Bugsy Moran is seated at the bar, a little dazed. Rough night, huh? Bobby says. Bugsy grunts. His real name is Michael. He's got wild long hair and a crazy reputation and everyone in town loves him. Chris invites him to join them for breakfast and Bugsy slides off his stool and follows them out the door into the light rain. They climb into Chris's twenty-year-old Volvo and drive down to the White Hen Pantry and shuffle in, eyes bloodshot, heads throbbing. They buy sandwiches and cheap sunglasses and then they make their way out into the unrelenting greyness of the day. Chris drives them back to the Nest and they pick up thirty-year-old Dale Murphy, another crew member from the Andrea Gail, and head out of town. Dale's nickname is Murph, he's a big grizzly bear of a guy from Bradenton Beach, Florida. He has shaggy black hair, a thin beard, and angled, almost Mongolian eyes; he gets a lot of looks around town. He has a three-year-old baby, also named Dale, whom he openly adores. The Perfect Storm A True Story of Men Against the Sea . Copyright © by Sebastian Junger. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold. Excerpted from The Perfect Storm: A True Story of Men Against the Sea by Sebastian Junger All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.