Familiar to millions of readers of "The Perfect Storm" as the captain of the "Hannah Boden", sister ship to the "Andrea Gail", Greenlaw is also known as one of the best sea captains on the East Coast. Here she offers an adventure-soaked tale of her own, complete with danger, humor, and characters so colorful they seem to have been ripped from the ...
Familiar to millions of readers of "The Perfect Storm" as the captain of the "Hannah Boden", sister ship to the "Andrea Gail", Greenlaw is also known as one of the best sea captains on the East Coast. Here she offers an adventure-soaked tale of her own, complete with danger, humor, and characters so colorful they seem to have been ripped from the pages of "Moby Dick".
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Publishers Weekly, 1999-08-02 Greenlaw, captain of a commercial swordfishing boat, tells a new brand of salty tale. She is a woman who has succeeded in a codified and clannish man's vocation, and her take on life at sea is clear-eyed and fresh as she relates the day-to-day facts of a single voyage. Reading her diarylike entries, she sounds straightforward and real─without suffering the flatness of tone that often afflicts nonprofessional performers. She starts on sailing day, telling how her boat is prepared, then introduces her five-man crew as they arrive shipside─with telltale pounding hangovers. Then she gets into the dynamic of the job, what it means to spend 30 days in a 100-ft. space, working long hours. With the crew, naturally, come "crew problems": sickness, conflicts, insubordination. Here, Greenlaw shines, giving a wonderful sense of what she calls "the etiquette" of her work. Greenlaw proves that it doesn't take life-and-death conflict to make sea adventure compelling; what sets her world apart is spelled out in the details, as she succinctly depicts her singular way of life. Thanks to the intimacy afforded by the spoken-word medium, listeners will feel as if they're right alongside the captain on her journey. Based on the 1999 Little, Brown hardcover. (July) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Publishers Weekly, 1999-04-12 She's smart, hard-working and good at what she does, though sometimes she wishes she had a life. Greenlaw is captain of the Hannah Boden, sister ship to the Andrea Gail, the sword-fishing boat whose disappearance was described with agonizing verisimilitude in Sebastian Junger's bestseller, The Perfect Storm. Greenlaw tells a comparatively quotidian tale, "the true story of a real, and typical, sword-fishing trip, from leaving the dock to returning." Not trying to compete with Junger's operatic tale of death on the high seas, Greenlaw deals with stormy personalities rather than with bad weather. She rounds out the story with her gimlet-eyed description of a captain's biggest headache after nature itself: the crew. Racism, drug use, baffling illnesses: these are all elements of a 30-day journey for six people crammed aboard a 100-ft. boat designed less for human comfort than to carry the 50,000 pounds or more of fish it will eventually take on. But Greenlaw picks her sailors carefully and, through her own example, inspires a fierce loyalty among the men─such as the one who extracted his own abscessed tooth rather than return to shore ("In my experience," she notes, "very few men are willing to pull their own teeth"). Greenlaw's narrative should foster an abiding respect in anyone who has tossed a swordfish steak on the grill, and it is certain to induce jaw-dropping admiration among personnel managers everywhere. Photos not seen by PW. (May)
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