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My Old Man and the Sea
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My Old Man and the Sea

3.82 of 5 stars 3.82  ·  rating details  ·  448 ratings  ·  53 reviews
Some fathers and sons go fishing together. Some play ball. David Hays and Daniel Hays sailed 17,000 miles through the world's most feared and fabled waters in a little boat they built together. This is their story. Alone with nothing but the mammoth waves of the Southern Ocean, the unceasing wind, a compass, a sextant and a pet cat, they voyage down the Caribbean, through ...more
Paperback, 256 pages
Published April 26th 1996 by Harpperen (first published 1995)
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My Old Man and the Sea by David and Daniel Hays is about a father and son (respectively) and the growth of their love and respect for each other, and perhaps not inconsistently, the flowering of their independence. That in itself is not so unusual, but most fathers and sons don't build 25 ft sailing yachts to sail around Cape Horn.
The tip of South America has probably the worst weather for any kind of sea vessel of any place on earth. It can take months to beat and tack back and forth against t
Quinn Helgason
"My Old Man and The Sea" is an exceptional book to read. Especially because I am a very avid sailor, (I have been sailing since I was four). This book is about David and Daniel Hays, father and son, who sail to Cape Horn which is at the very bottom of South America. Their 17,000 mile voyage across the high waves and stormy weather of the southern ocean in their homemade sailboat with only a compass, sextant, and a pet cat, not what every father and son does. Not only is it an adventure but also ...more
Couldn't have chosen a more appropriate book to start a father/son book club with.

It's written by a father/son team about their real life experience sailing around Cape Horn in a small sailboat.

It's written journal-style taking turns between the two men. It's partially about their relationship and the struggles they both have with aging, pride and mortality, and partially about their sailing adventure.

Recommended to sailors and sons.
This is a book written by two authors. Subtitled ‘A father and son sail round Cape Horn’ – as the voyage progresses, each contributes sometimes a paragraph, sometimes several pages. The maps are clear and helpful; though I’d have preferred all maps to have been grouped to fold-out from the front-inside. I temporarily solved that problem by keeping a pad of multi-coloured adhesive page markers to hand.

The older man is a highly respected theatre director, and a graduate of Harvard. The younger is
First, to be honest, I think this is like a 4.8. I love my parents, but living a few feet from one of them for 180 plus days... I don't think so. What a story. Living in San Diego, a big part of my life has been sailing with people who are good at it. I can read a sail and the tell tails and get some good speed, but unfortunately sailing blue water requires much more than the "feel". A very close friend (Jon C) was that other kind of sailor who had the feel and was good enough at all things sail ...more
I picked up this book on the recommendation of a sailor in Fish Creek Wisconsin. I will give credit where it is due: sailing around Cape Horn in a twenty five foot boat is impressive. That being said, the book was less of a triumph. It lost me several times, hence the low rating.
I enjoyed because I love sailing and the ocean. Nothing profound, just enjoyable.
Margaret Schulte
I love this book, and I return to it over and over. There's one particular passage about cooking on the boat that I read out loud when friends are gathered for a meal on a boat. It is impossible to get through it without laughing hysterically until tears are streaming down my face. It's that funny.

But it's not just a funny, lighthearted book. What I love about it is the wide range of emotions that it brings to the reader. You don't have to be a sailor to enjoy the relationship between a father a
Sailing books, especially small boat sailing, captivate me. The authors of this book are a father and son team who decide that they want to sail around Cape Horn from New York and back (1984). While much of the book describes nautical detail, I still liked the premise of sailing a little bit every day to accomplish a great task. Much preparation must be done before the journey can even start. While I didn’t understand all of the references to the building the interior of the 28 foot boat, I was ...more
Mik Hetu
A father and son sail a 25–foot boat 17,000 miles for the main purpose of experiencing a voyage around Cape Horn, arguably the most lethal waters on the planet.
This is a cool story, told in turns by the father and the son, each from viewpoints on the opposite sides of the twenty–some years between them. Like all good adventure stories, the adventure itself — in this case, the sailing — is only the base, the platform for the story written between the lines. This book describes well voyaging on
Fernando Andresen guimaraes
An enjoyable read for sailors, fathers and sons. Good on the sailing although sailors would have wanted more. I liked the maps with the route and the plans of the boat but would have liked to see more, particularly pictures but I do understand that it happened in a pre-GoPro era. Moving the narrative from one to the other is effective and I suspect rereading will produce gems. Touching words from the father, counterpointing his own father and his son with whom he is sailing. The son showed a vul ...more
Excellent narrative art ,as critics suggest . Hemmingway weaves around his narration to arrive at a heart break , an irony , not dramatic but one that makes your head hang for a few seconds after you've read the last pages.
Peter Milligan
Very underrated. Loved this book. Great family conflict. Pet drama.
Kathy Carman
Interesting read, not as detailed as I might have like, but a good read none-the-less.

A young man and his father build a boat (starting with a pre-fab hull) and then sail it west to east around Cape Horn. This is a pretty good read, although they either had a remarkably easy trip around the Horn or they downplayed the drama. As often happens in this sort of book, the cat falls overboard. I guess that's drama. Still, it's a pity.
Apr 17, 2007 Rob rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: inspiration/Father-son/sailing
Shelves: non-fiction
I had heard good things about this book from a judge who mandated that 17 year old felon on probation read it to learn about courage. An excellent book that talked about the preparations of sailing an ocean trek with a small sailboat as well as the relationship of the father & son. Their relationship was positive but strained during the trip.
A very powerful book...dragged at times, especially when it got into the really technical aspects of sailing...but it also managed to convey the loneliness and boredom that comes with being at sea for such a long time. The authors' accounts of their journey, and of their father/son relationship, was very poignant.
Michael Harris
Friends of the HHI Library find. A warm, funny and touching "adventure travel" story of a father and son building a 25 foot sailboat (with no motor) and their sail from New London CT, around Cape Horn and back to New London. Even if you don't like sailing this is still a very engaging story of this relationship.
Scott Bischke
I read this books moons ago but noticed it on my shelf the other day. I am not a sailor, but I found this book to be a page turner, start to end. Two men, father and son, taking a small sailboat around the tip of South America. Frightening storms and against the sea...a riveting adventure story.
Jim Talbott
David Hays is a fellow synagogue member who sailed around "The Horn" with his son, and they wrote a book together about it. For those of you who read Kon Tikki as kids, this has a lot of sailing adventure and lists of supplies that in that vein... They even visit Easter Island. A fun escapist book.
Enjoyable. I gravitate toward the man vs. nature theme but this one, despite taking on something as monumental as rounding Cape Horn .......that part of the story is merely background to the dynamic of the father and son relationship. A story that will make you think of your own relationships.
Gig Wailgum
interesting read on a good father son adventure
I enjoyed this story written jointly by a father and son about their round trip sail from CT around Cape Horn and back. It is a story of adventure and of the evolving relationship between this father and son whose relationship prior to this trip was strained.
This book is a little slow at first. Once you get through the first chapter or two it picks up and is hard to put down. I would recommend this book to anyone who is interested in sailing and what it actually takes to plan and execute a trip around Cape Horn.
If you like reading stories about the sea, sailing, and relationships, this is great. Wm F Buckley's son recommended it in his memoir losing Mum and Pop. Told from two points of view, father and son, role reversals interesting.
Eileen Stoecklin
This was a heart warming adventure. A father and his son, build a boat and sail around the world. It's intelligent, funny, and well written. I read this book over ten years ago but at times still think about it.
It's an autobiography about a dude and his dad sailing from Maine, through the Panama Canal, around the tip of Cape Horn, and back to Maine again. Great book if you like sailing or travel/adventure type books.
Li este livro porque constava no Plano Nacional de Leitura do ensino básico e gostei bastante. Ensina-nos a persistir no que realmente queremos, pois lutando, conseguimos tudo o que desejamos.
Jenny Brown
Thoroughly enjoyable two-person memoir of a father-son sailing trip around the horn, which as good memoirs do, tells us much more about the authors than just that they went a-sailing.

Beth A
A father and son build a 25-foot sail boat and sail it around Cape Horn. A very interesting book for sailors, others may not identify with as much of the story.
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