Author: Nathaniel Philbrick
Title: In the Heart of the Sea: The Tragedy of the Whaleship Essex
Description: Moby Dick was based on a true story; the story of the Essex, a Nantucket whaleship that was rammed by a whale. The crew was forced to take the three whaleboats and try to reach land.
Source: I <3 Penguin
Writing style: Absolutely fascinating. Meticulously researched, based on primary sources, and riveting.
Major ideas: History can be better than a novel. I could never finish Moby Dick.
Wrap-up: I loved this book. The sailors seemed real to me; who would live and who would not? I loved the Stormalong John tales as a kid, and my ancestors are from New England. Maybe I just have some sea water in my blood. 5/5*
For a more light-hearted look at life on (and off) the ship, click here.