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Island of the Lost: Shipwrecked at the Edge of the World (2007)

de Joan Druett

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4062246,732 (3.86)78
Auckland Island is a godforsaken place in the middle of the Southern Ocean, 285 miles south of New Zealand. With year-round freezing rain and howling winds, it is one of the most forbidding places in the world. To be shipwrecked there means almost certain death.In 1864 Captain Thomas Musgrave and his crew of four aboard the schooner Grafton wreck on the southern end of the island. Utterly alone in a dense coastal forest, plagued by stinging blowflies and relentless rain, Captain Musgrave inspires his men to take action. With barely more than their bare hands, they build a cabin and, remarkably, a forge, where they manufacture their tools.Incredibly, at the same time on the opposite end of the island, the Invercauld wrecks during a horrible storm. Nineteen men stagger ashore. Unlike Captain Musgrave, the captain of the Invercauld falls apart given the same dismal circumstances. His men fight and split up; some die of starvation, others turn to cannibalism. Only three survive. Musgrave and all of his men not only endure for nearly two years, they also plan their own astonishing escape, setting off on one of the most courageous sea voyages in history.… (mais)
  1. 10
    The Worst Journey in the World de Apsley Cherry-Garrard (rebeccanyc)
    rebeccanyc: Both of these books testify to the ability of people in hazardous and terrifying physical conditions to use both hard work and their mental and emotional strength to survive.
  2. 10
    Castaway on the Auckland Isles de Thomas Musgrave (Stbalbach)
    Stbalbach: Grafton shipwreck survivor.
  3. 10
    Wrecked On A Reef de François Édouard Raynal (Stbalbach)
    Stbalbach: Grafton shipwreck survivor. In the 19th century, this was the best-selling account of the shipwreck and the inspiration for Verne's The Mysterious Island.
  4. 00
    L'Île mystérieuse de Jules Verne (Stbalbach)
    Stbalbach: The Mysterious Island was inspired by the real-life shipwreck told in Island of the Lost
  5. 00
    Wake of the Invercauld: Shipwrecked in the Sub-Antarctic: A Great-Granddaughter's Pilgrimage de Madelene Allen (Stbalbach)
    Stbalbach: Great-grandaughter of Invercauld survivor Robert Holding.
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This is a non-fiction story of shipwreck and survival, set in the seas south of New Zealand in the early 1860s. A crew of five departed Sydney, Australia in a small vessel, seeking silver laden ore on uninhabited Campbell Island. In route home, they were shipwrecked on nearby Auckland Island, likewise uninhabited. This is mainly a story of how they survived their lengthy isolation.

Midway through the story, however, a second ship, quite a bit larger, was likewise dashed upon the rocky shores, at a point some distance from the original crew. Nineteen people survived this wreck, however their experience on Auckland Island was far different.

I can’t say that this is an outstanding read. It is quite short, and while it contains a good bit of interesting information, there just isn’t much story here. The ingenuity of both groups, especially the former, is quite impressive. Today, we just go to the story and get some nails, or buy groceries. These folks manufactured cement and soap. They constructed a forge with bellows and crafted the tools and items they needed from scrap metal salvaged from their shipwreck. They built a water tight cabin, with fireplace and survived for 18 months.

Especially striking was the different experience of the two groups of shipwrecked sailors, especially as it relates to the interpersonal dynamic and the leadership skills exhibited by one and not the other. This is short read and worth the time to read, especially if you enjoy stories of this type, ( )
  santhony | Feb 8, 2021 |
Shipwreck near Australia near the Arctic Circle. Several of the men aboard survive and this book tells their story. Really is amazing how they kept each other fed and entertained. In the midst of their time on the island, another ship wrecks on the other side of the island. They don't cooperate with each other and the effects are devastating. Remarkable story. I enjoyed this one. ( )
  spounds | Jan 2, 2021 |
Adventure is one of my favorite genres. This book is chocked full of adventure. I believe if I were shipwrecked on an inhospitable island, I would have the guts to survive. ( )
  Tuke15 | Sep 5, 2020 |
This is a fascinating nonfiction book about two different groups of shipwrecked sailors in 1965. Auckland Island is far south in between New Zealand and Antarctica. It is a harsh place and when two different shipwrecks happened within a few months of each other, neither group of survivors was aware that there were people on the other side of the island.

What's so fascinating is that the two groups were so drastically different. The five men on the Grafton worked together and helped each other. Thanks to the resourcefulness of the leaders they managed to survive for nearly two years. The nineteen survivors of the wreck of the Invercauld had a markedly different outcome. They disagreed, split into smaller groups, and did not fare well. Only three survived.

The audio edition narrated by David Colacci is very good. This is the first time I’ve listened to him and would not hesitate to pick up another audio narrated by him.

I did pick up the print edition from the library while I was listening because I wanted to see the map in it for reference. ( )
1 vote SuziQoregon | Dec 30, 2019 |
I have read the accounts of a few subantarctic shipwrecks, but never one which was as recently written and one that was so well-researched. This story was compiled from survivor accounts, official documents and newspaper clippings concerning the wreck of the Grafton in 1864 on the Auckland Islands, 300 miles south of New Zealand. It tells the story of the 5 survivors as they salvage what they can from their wrecked ship, and make a life for themselves in their wait for rescue.
The Auckland Islands are a harsh place. The main island has immense cliffs the entire western coast, it is cold, wet and tremendous storms batter it winter-long. The forest is gnarly, boggy and virtually impenetrable. The survivors faced the most shocking conditions as they wintered over, and, frequently on the brink of starvation, spent their days foraging, hunting, and trying as they could to improve their shelter.
There area many amazing things about this story, but one of the most incredible is that during their "stay", another ship wrecked at the other end of the island, a mere 20 miles away, and the parallel story of those survivors is also told. Each group knew nothing of the other. The most recent castaways faced even harsher circumstances. We come to see the value in having organisation and good leadership, the fortune of having a wrecked ship to salvage, and the importance of those first few days in getting food and shelter fast. I think this book is rare(ish),but find it if you can as it is a rollicking story- and true at that. ( )
3 vote LovingLit | May 8, 2018 |
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It has seldom fallen to our lot as journalists to record a more remarkable instance of escape from the perils of shipwreck, and subsequent providential deliverance from the privations of a desolate island, after two years' sojourn, than that we have now to furnish. -Southland News, July 29, 1865

The man who has experienced shipwreck shudders even at a calm sea. -Ovid
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For Roberta McIntyre, whose early encouragement could not have been more well timed.
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It was October 1863, early springtime in Sydney, Australia.
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Auckland Island is a godforsaken place in the middle of the Southern Ocean, 285 miles south of New Zealand. With year-round freezing rain and howling winds, it is one of the most forbidding places in the world. To be shipwrecked there means almost certain death.In 1864 Captain Thomas Musgrave and his crew of four aboard the schooner Grafton wreck on the southern end of the island. Utterly alone in a dense coastal forest, plagued by stinging blowflies and relentless rain, Captain Musgrave inspires his men to take action. With barely more than their bare hands, they build a cabin and, remarkably, a forge, where they manufacture their tools.Incredibly, at the same time on the opposite end of the island, the Invercauld wrecks during a horrible storm. Nineteen men stagger ashore. Unlike Captain Musgrave, the captain of the Invercauld falls apart given the same dismal circumstances. His men fight and split up; some die of starvation, others turn to cannibalism. Only three survive. Musgrave and all of his men not only endure for nearly two years, they also plan their own astonishing escape, setting off on one of the most courageous sea voyages in history.

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