View Full Version : Moitessier ~ A sea vagabond's world
I've rather been overdosing on Moitessier recently. I read "A voyage for madmen" and the frequent references to Moistessier (the real winner of the Golden Globe?) therein led me to "The Long Way" and now I have just completed the compilation of his notes and writings in the form of "A sea vagabond's world". This latter book has been an enjoyable read being part technical manual and part sailing adventure description. One could argue that it's slightly disjointed with rapid and unrelated changes of subject but I think this takes nothing away from the content, it is after all a compilation of his scribblings by his lady partner produced after Moitessier's death. Wholly recommended. I'm now off to buy a copy of "Tamata and the Alliance" - a good Christmas day read I expect!
I've just ordered a couple of his books (Long way and madman) and would be interested if you think they should be read in any particular order? I will probably buy all of them in the end.
I read Peter Nichols' book first followed by Moitessier's and this is probably the best sequence. Nichols tells the story of the whole race and helps put Moitessier's writing in context. BM doesn't really give much more information about the race than he had while competing, probably because he was never really that keen on taking part in the first place and it was certainly irrelevant to him by the end.
Yes I'd agree with Silkie that it should be madmen first followed by The Long Way; it does provide a context for the Golden Globe that way around. Mottessier makes hardly any reference the race (as Silkie says) in The Long Way - it's simply an irrelevance to him.
Interestingly in Sea Vagabond i feel that Mottessier "owns up" to how hard the second time around the Indian Ocean and the far South Pacific really was. He makes nothings of the knock downs in The Long Way but in Sea Vagabond you get the technical analysis - ouch!
Be aware - you've found a rich seam of reading from which you'll not escape until you've read them all!
I thought peter nicholl's book was great - i would recommend it as a christmas present for anyone wishing to get the overall story on a tale often mentioned but seldom given full descriptive treatment.
Voyage for Madmen spends quite a bit of time on Crowhurst. A better, and more detailed, analysis by Tomalin in The Strange Last Voyage of Donald Crowhurst. IMO.
The contrast between Crowhurst and Moitessier is extraordinary. Indeed, the characters of all the competitors is as diverse as a modern reality tv cast!
Voyage for Madmen also gives detail to Nigel Tetley's acheivements which, at least for me anyway, had been poorly recognised up until this book. Tetley did extraordinarily well and was very close to home when his trimaran (I believe it was the same class as Crowhurt's boat) sank. I think I'm correct in saying that Tetely commited suicide some years later; terribly sad.
Bit of a Moitessier fan myself although I read "The Long Way" first perhaps the order should be "Sailing to the Reefs" then "Cape Horn - the Logical Route" then "The Long Way" Then you will an idea of how his ideas about sailing and boats developed over time.
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