- Used Books
- Staff Picks
- Gifts & Gift Cards
- Sell Books
- Stores & Events
- Let's Talk Books
Special Offers see all
More at Powell's
Recently Viewed clear list
Used Trade Paper
Usually ships in 5 to 7 business days
available for shipping or prepaid pickup only
This title in other editions
Simple Courage: A True Story of Peril on the Seaby Frank Delaney
Synopses & Reviews
“HEAVEN HELP THE SAILOR ON A NIGHT LIKE THIS.”
-old folk prayer
In late December 1951, laden with passengers and nearly forty metric tons of cargo, the freighter S.S. Flying Enterprise steamed westward from Europe toward America. A few days into the voyage, she hit the eye of a ferocious storm. Force 12 winds tossed men about like playthings and turned drops of freezing Atlantic foam into icy missiles. When, in the space of twenty-eight hours, the ship was slammed by two rogue waves-solid walls of water more than sixty feet high-the impacts cracked the decks and hull almost down to the waterline, threw the vessel over on her side, and thrust all on board into terror.
Flying Enterprises captain, Kurt Carlsen, a seaman of rare ability and valor, mustered all hands to patch the cracks and then try to right the ship. When these efforts came to naught, he helped transfer, across waves forty feet high, the passengers and the entire crew to lifeboats sent from nearby ships. Then, for reasons both professional and intensely personal, and to the amazement of the world, Carlsen defied all requests and entreaties to abandon ship. Instead, for the next two weeks, he fought to bring Flying Enterprise and her cargo to port. His heroic endeavor became the worlds biggest news.
In a narrative as dramatic as the oceans fury, acclaimed bestselling author Frank Delaney tells, for the first time, the full story of this unmatched bravery and endurance at sea. We meet the devoted family whose well-being and safety impelled Carlsen to stay with his ship. And we read of Flying Enterprises buccaneering owner, the fearless and unorthodox Hans Isbrandtsen, who played a crucial role in Kurt Carlsens fate.
Drawing on historical documents and contemporary accounts and on exclusive interviews with Carlsens family, Delaney opens a window into the world of the merchant marine. With deep affection-and respect-for the weather and all that goes with it, he places us in the heart of the storm, a “biblical tempest” of unimaginable power. He illuminates the bravery and ingenuity of Carlsen and the extraordinary courage that the thirty-seven-year-old captain inspired in his stalwart crew. This is a gripping, absorbing narrative that highlights one mans outstanding fortitude and heroic sense of duty.
“One of the great sea stories of the twentieth century… [a] surefire nautical crowd-pleaser.”
--Booklist é (starred review)
“Frank Delaney has written a completely absorbing, thrilling and inspirational account of a disaster at sea that occasioned heroism of the first order. In the hands of a gifted storyteller,
the ‘simple courage of the ships captain and the young radio man who risked their lives to bring a mortally wounded ship to port reveals the essence and power of all true courage-
a stubborn devotion to the things we love.”
-Senator John McCain
From the Hardcover edition.
In a gripping, absorbing narrative that highlights one mans outstanding fortitude and sense of duty, acclaimed bestselling author Delaney tells the full story of the S.S. "Flying Enterprise" and its captains unmatched bravery in the face of a violent storm.
About the Author
Frank Delaney is the author of the New York Times bestselling novel Ireland, as well as several fiction and nonfiction bestsellers in the United Kingdom. A former judge for the Booker Prize, Delaney enjoyed a prominent career in BBC broadcasting before becoming a full-time writer. Born in Tipperary, Ireland, he now lives in New York and Connecticut.
From the Hardcover edition.
What Our Readers Are Saying
Other books you might like
History and Social Science » World History » 1650 to Present