Come Wind or Weather is Clare Francis' second book - her first book, Come Hell or High Water, was so good I read this one as well.
But wait - who is Clare Francis? Clare studied at the Royal Ballet School, graduated in Economics from University College London, worked in marketing, excelled at offshore yacht racing, was the first woman skipper in the Whitbread, became a BBC presenter and then... oh yeah, morphed to an international bestselling thriller writer. Not bad. Not bad at all.
Topics Covered: Clare describes skippering ADC Accutrac in the 1977-78 Whitbread Around the World race with 11 crew, thus becoming the first woman ever to skipper a Whitbread team. She covers preparation, refit, funding and the race itself.
The Best Part: Come Wind or Weather is not just a record of events. Hands down, what I loved best about this book is her detailed descriptions of the characters on board. Actually, were her descriptions so detailed? No. It was her choice of details presented that made the character of each teammate so clear. She interlaced humourous quotes from the Sea Log with concise but vivid accounts of crew interactions and events. Brilliant.
And her description of racing through the Antarctic Ocean is thrilling - and terrifying - in its own right. Oooo, I do love a thrilling tale.
Wishes: Okay. All right. I wish this book were longer. Or that it had a sequel. Hey, wait! It has a pre-quel! It's called Come Hell or High Water. I loved that one too.
Conclusion: I said I'd read any book Clare Francis has written - that's why I read this one. And I wasn't disappointed.
Post- ballerina-ing, marketing, dominating the yachting scene and BBC presenting, Francis began writing psycho-thrillers that debuted on the NY Times Bestseller list right after she wrote this sailing-themed one.
I've got a list of her thrillers as long as my whiskers to read. But reviews on those are for another post...