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When artist, illustrator, writer, and adventurer Rockwell Kent first published N by E in a limited edition in 1930, his account of a voyage on a 33-foot cutter from New York Harbor to the rugged shores of Greenland quickly became a collectors' item. Little wonder, for readers are immediately drawn to Kent's vivid descriptions of the experience; we share "the feeling of wind and wet and cold, of lifting seas and steep descents, of rolling over as the wind gusts hit," and the sound "of wind in the shrouds, of hard spray flung on a drum-tight canvas, of rushing water at the scuppers, of the gale shearing a tormented sea."
When the ship sinks in a storm-swept fjord within 50 miles of its destination, the story turns to the stranding and subsequent rescue of the three-man crew, salvage of the vessel, and life among native Greenlanders. Magnificently illustrated by Kent's wood-block prints and narrated in his poetic and highly entertaining style, this tale of the perils of killer nor'easters, treacherous icebergs, and impenetrable fog -- and the joys of sperm whales breaching or dawn unmasking a longed-for landfall -- is a rare treat for old salts and landlubbers alike.
- Wesleyan University Press, March 2011
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