On Oct. 20, 2002, Capt. Dave Shoemaker headed out onto the Bering Sea at the helm of the 190-foot longliner Galaxy and was soon fighting for his life and those of his crew. Intended as (and priced as) a safety training DVD for the commercial marine industry, "Lessons from the Galaxy: Tragedy and Courage on the Bering Sea" ($295, John Sabella & Associates, 2010) tells the story of Shoemaker's struggles when an on-board fire threatens the lives of everyone aboard and reinforces the importance of regular safety training, no matter how much boating experience one might have.
The Sewall family of Bath, Maine, built and managed a fleet of more than 100 merchant deepwater square-rigged vessels in the late 1800s and dealt with everything from mutiny to shipwrecks during their voyages.
Nautical knowledge from how to make a paddle to fending off a shark can be found in "The Anti-Pirate Potato Cannon: And 101 Other Things for Young Mariners to Build, Try and Do on the Water" ($24.95, McGraw Hill, 2010) by David Seidman and Jeff Hemmel. The sturdy maroon hardcover provides indoor and outdoor activities that allow children (and adults, too) to get the most out of their experiences near and on the water.
"The Mariner's Book of Days 2011" ($14.95, Sheridan House, Inc., 2010) by Peter H. Spectre is celebrating its 20th anniversary of bringing boaters their week-by-week dose of nautical fact, fiction and folklore.
While pirates in adventure tales are often daring and heroic, modern-day piracy is a very grave matter.
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