In the winter of 1864, five seamen aboard the schooner Grafton wreck on the remote and icy Auckland Island, 285 miles south of New Zealand. An isolated speck in the Southern Ocean, it is a godforsaken place, with winds howling at sixty miles an hour, rain three hundred days a year, and an almost impenetrable coastal forest.
Under the leadership of Captain Thomas Musgrave, these men defy their slim chance of survival. With their bare hands they build a cabin and, incredibly, a forge, where they manufacture every single nail as well as most of their tools. Meanwhile, on the opposite end of the same islandtwenty miles of impassable cliffs and chasms awayanother ship wrecks during a horrible gale. Nineteen men struggle ashore. They succumb to utter anarchy, and only three survive, while all the Grafton men survive for nearly two years before finally building a vessel and setting off on one of the most courageous sea voyages ever. Award-winning maritime historian Joan Druett tells a gripping cautionary tale about leardership, endurance, human ingenuity, and the tenuous line between order and chaos.
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"This is a fine addition to the genre of survival tales like Endurance or In the Heart of the Sea. " - PW
"Viewers of television's Survivor and readers of survival novels will enjoy Island, and the book could provide teens with the know-how to stay alive if they ever found themselves in a similar situation." - School Library Journal
"Swashbuckling maritime history reanimated by a noted naval enthusiast...depicted with consistent brio, stormy seas become epic events." - Kirkus
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If you've enjoyed survival tales such as Endurance and In the Heart of the Sea, this is likely to be one for you!
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