Nights of Ice: True Stories of Disaster and Survival on Alaska's High Seas Paperback – Feb 15 1999
Frequently Bought Together
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
No Kindle device required. Download one of the Free Kindle apps to start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, and computer.
To get the free app, enter your e-mail address or mobile phone number.
Frantic and entertaining in a guilty sort of way, Nights of Ice is like Endurance on steroids. The book presents eight true stories of disaster and survival involving commercial fisherman off the coast of Alaska (said to be one of America's most dangerous occupations). Included are tales of subzero temperatures, 100 mph winds, 60-foot-high waves, boats encased in ice and capsized, men trapped underwater, and other horrors. Author Spike Walker, who interviewed many of the survivors in compiling this book, is no stranger to such tales of the high seas; he worked as a commercial fisherman off the Alaska coast and wrote about it in Working on the Edge.
Nights of Ice begins promisingly enough but unfortunately gives way to a sensationalism that cheapens the whole affair: "At that moment, Bruce Hinman's past life flashed before his very eyes. Launched instantaneously through time, he watched the events of his life play out before him...they flashed and froze there in his consciousness, in a kind of nostalgic collage of all that had once mattered in his life." As a result, there are a lot of unintentionally funny moments. Despite its problems, though, Nights of Ice is fun to read, and lovers of true-adventure stories or those interested in the dangers of the Alaskan fishing industry should enjoy it. --Andy Boynton
From Library Journal
Stories of disaster and survival in commercial fishing boats working the Alaskan coast make up this sequel to Walker's Working on the Edge (LJ 6/15/91). These eight stories of fishermen whose trips went sour are harrowing, but the book's overall effect is numbing rather than exciting. Although no one would deny the suffering and loss experienced by the survivors, their stories are pretty much alike. Walker does not have a particularly deft style, nor, in this volume, does he provide any great insight into conditions in the king-crab trade. Only libraries that purchased the earlier book and are particularly interested in the subject should take the trouble to acquire this.?Edwin B. Burgess, U.S. Army Combined Arms Research Lib., Fort Leavenworth, Kan.
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Inside This Book(Learn More)
For Joe Harlan, captain of the fifty-three-foot crab boat Tidings, and his crew, the 1989 Kodiak Island tanner crab season had been an exceptionally tough one. Read the first page
Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Back Cover
What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?
Top Customer Reviews
1) Does everyone see their entire lives flash before their eyes when they are near death?
2) Some guy's one-year old child asks him if he is Santa Claus upon his return from an ordeal at sea. Clearly Spike has never spent time with a one-year old; not only can very few of them speak more than a word or two, but this one is so eloquent and knowledgeable that he thinks the old man is Kris himself!
3) The helicopter pilot makes it to a "small village airport" just before running out of fuel (which means it must have been between 5-10 minutes from the rescue locale since they only had 30 minutes of fuel left before the rescue attempt(hmmmm), but somehow a C-130 can get in and out of there to send them home while the chopper gets an inspection (hmmm hmmmm).
I'll leave it at that...
Spike Walker's subject matter is, first of all, relevant to anyone who has lived near the sea. The Pacific Ocean, the Bering Sea and the Gulf of Alaska, as one non-fisherman said, "I can't drink it all and I'm damned sure I can't swim that far."
Life at sea in a boat, rolling and plowing through the next wave, gets into some folks blood. I'm sure it's that way with fishermen and women but the money don't hurt either. In any case its a perilous life.
Nights of Ice takes us along for a ride with people, real people, who have experienced the worst the sea has to offer. Walker's intimate knowledge of workin' the boats has us searching for lights in a "can't see your hand in front of your face" stateroom, attempting, frantically, to pull on the survival suit. We are terrified of the boat goin' down with us still on board. We gasp for air and our heart seems to stop when we hit the 37 degree water. We, along with actual survivors, use every ounce of strength and resource our bodies are able to muster in order to survive.
Nights of Ice and its individual, sometimes heroic, stories are an adventure in itself.
Most recent customer reviews
Great book! Not quite up to the first book, "Working on the Edge", but great. The author spares the reader all the scientific, high-tech bs of the "Perfect... Read morePublished on Oct. 25 1999
I have heard that King Crab fishing was dangerous. Spike Walker lets you know exactly what it is really like. I have a whole new respect for those who bring in our King Crab! Read morePublished on Aug. 23 1999
Spike Walker is a journalist who speaks with the experience of having been and worked there over many season of crab fishing. Read morePublished on April 6 1999
Look for similar items by category
- Books > Biographies & Memoirs > Historical
- Books > History > Americas > United States
- Books > History > United States
- Books > Science & Math > Earth Sciences > Geography
- Books > Science & Math > Earth Sciences > Natural Disasters
- Books > Science & Math > Environment > Natural Disasters
- Books > Science & Math > Nature & Ecology > Ecology > Living on the Land > Hunting & Fishing > Fishing > Regional Guides
- Books > Science & Math > Nature & Ecology > Ecosystems
- Books > Science & Math > Nature & Ecology > Oceans & Seas
- Books > Sports & Outdoors > Hunting & Fishing > Fishing > Regional Guides
- Books > Sports & Outdoors > Outdoor Recreation > Boating
- Books > Sports & Outdoors > Outdoor Recreation > Fishing
- Books > Sports & Outdoors > Water Sports > Boating