All Hands on Deck: A Modern-Day High Seas Adventure to the Far Side of the World
A maritime adventure memoir that follows a crew of misfits hired to sail an 18th-century warship 6,000 miles to Hollywood
“Thrilling . . . this is an adventure story of the highest order.” —Nathaniel Philbrick, author of the National Book Award–winning In the Heart of the Sea and Travels with George
In the late 1990s, Patrick O’Brian’s multimillion-copy-selling historical novel series—the Aubrey–Maturin series—seemed destined for film. With director Peter Weir and stars Russell Crowe and Paul Bettany signed on for Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World, there was one problem: The Rose, the replica 18th-century warship that filmmakers bought for the production, was in Newport, Rhode Island, two oceans and thousands of miles away from Hollywood.
Enter a ragtag crew of 30 oddballs and tall ship fanatics, including Will Sofrin, at the time a 21-year-old wooden-boat builder and yacht racer looking for some direction in his life. Together, the crew embarked on an epic adventure, racing a ticking clock and fighting against Mother Nature, and occasionally on another, to deliver the Rose, hopefully in one piece.
All Hands on Deck is Sofrin’s account of this unforgettable voyage. It’s a story of reinvention, of hard work on the high seas, of love, and of survival. The crew of the Rose effectively went back in time, brought to life the old ways of a forgotten world, and barely lived to tell the tale. All Hands on Deck is a gripping story and a must-read for fans of O’Brian’s novels and the Academy Award–winning film adaptation.
Will Sofrin is a master shipwright who has taught at MIT and has built boats for Billy Joel and Estée Lauder. As a former professional sailor and licensed captain, he has tracked more than 30,000 blue-water miles. Today he is a freelance writer for numerous maritime periodicals, continues to race sailboats, and explores the coast of California with his wife and seven-year-old daughter. All Hands on Deck is his first book.