Tristram Korten’s Into the Storm is a riveting account of the search and rescue effort to save the crews of two ships lost in Hurricane Joaquin in the fall of 2015. The El Faro and the Minouche are trying to move cargo across the Caribbean as the storm grows in intensity. Korten follows the actions and decisions of each captain using extensive interviews and the ships’ Voyage Data Recorders.
The first several chapters of Into the Storm provide a very readable primer of Coast Guard history, open-ocean shipping, and the basic science behind weather forecasting. Korten strikes the perfect balance between background and narrative, even breaking up the narrative at times to heighten the suspense. Working with a large cast of characters can be very difficult for an author and likewise for a reader to follow, but Korten does a good job in creating authentic and memorable depictions of each participant. There isn’t any editorializing in the book, and his exhaustive research allows the reader to come to his or her own conclusions.
Overall, I highly recommend this first-class nonfiction thriller to anyone who enjoys the work of John Krakauer, Erik Larson, and Sebastian Junger.
5 out of 5 stars
Comes out on April 24th, 2018
Many thanks to NetGalley, Ballantine Books, and Mr. Korten for an advanced copy to review.