A riveting man-vs.-nature story and compelling tribute to those who perished.

THE LOST BOYS OF MONTAUK

THE TRUE STORY OF THE WIND BLOWN, FOUR MEN WHO VANISHED AT SEA, AND THE SURVIVORS THEY LEFT BEHIND

A memorable lost-at-sea narrative focusing on a Montauk-based commercial fishing boat.

On March 22, 1984, the Wind Blown left Montauk Harbor in search of tilefish more than 100 miles offshore. The crew consisted of Cpt. Michael Stedman, mate David Connick, and deckhands Michael Vigilant and Scott Clarke. According to reports, the first few days of their trip were not fruitful; however, conditions soon became “boiling hot,” with “tilefish coming up on every hook.” One week in, however, the crew confronted a “dreaded nor’easter,” not uncommon in the “unpredictable” March and April weather. The ship and its crew never returned. In this well-documented, page-turning debut book, Sag Harbor–based journalist Fairbanks, who has worked at HuffPost and the New York Times, explores the circumstances leading to the ship’s disappearance as well as how memories of the crew members have affected their loved ones. The author is particularly good in her examination of the complicated social dynamics involved in the lives of career fishermen. Regarding her reasons for writing the book, Fairbanks notes, “I wanted to understand how tragedies become imprinted in our memories, how trauma and grief wend their way through generations and become a kind of inheritance bequeathed to our descendants.” She accomplishes that mission and more, offering a well-fleshed-out portrait of the Montauk community and its residents and the evolution of the area as both the largest commercial fishing harbor in New York state and a summer haven for the wealthy. Along the way, Fairbanks also discovers a few closely held secrets that have had a tremendous impact on the lives of those involved. The author’s genuine desire to provide an accurate account of the history of the Wind Blown and the lives of its crew members is evident in her extensive research and attention to detail, making this a no-brainer for fans of The Perfect Storm and similar books.

A riveting man-vs.-nature story and compelling tribute to those who perished.

Pub Date: May 25, 2021

ISBN: 978-1-982103-23-1

Page Count: 352

Publisher: Gallery Books/Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: March 3, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15, 2021

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A conversational, pleasurable look into McConaughey’s life and thought.

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GREENLIGHTS

All right, all right, all right: The affable, laconic actor delivers a combination of memoir and self-help book.

“This is an approach book,” writes McConaughey, adding that it contains “philosophies that can be objectively understood, and if you choose, subjectively adopted, by either changing your reality, or changing how you see it. This is a playbook, based on adventures in my life.” Some of those philosophies come in the form of apothegms: “When you can design your own weather, blow in the breeze”; “Simplify, focus, conserve to liberate.” Others come in the form of sometimes rambling stories that never take the shortest route from point A to point B, as when he recounts a dream-spurred, challenging visit to the Malian musician Ali Farka Touré, who offered a significant lesson in how disagreement can be expressed politely and without rancor. Fans of McConaughey will enjoy his memories—which line up squarely with other accounts in Melissa Maerz’s recent oral history, Alright, Alright, Alright—of his debut in Richard Linklater’s Dazed and Confused, to which he contributed not just that signature phrase, but also a kind of too-cool-for-school hipness that dissolves a bit upon realizing that he’s an older guy on the prowl for teenage girls. McConaughey’s prep to settle into the role of Wooderson involved inhabiting the mind of a dude who digs cars, rock ’n’ roll, and “chicks,” and he ran with it, reminding readers that the film originally had only three scripted scenes for his character. The lesson: “Do one thing well, then another. Once, then once more.” It’s clear that the author is a thoughtful man, even an intellectual of sorts, though without the earnestness of Ethan Hawke or James Franco. Though some of the sentiments are greeting card–ish, this book is entertaining and full of good lessons.

A conversational, pleasurable look into McConaughey’s life and thought.

Pub Date: Oct. 20, 2020

ISBN: 978-0-593-13913-4

Page Count: 304

Publisher: Crown

Review Posted Online: Oct. 27, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 1, 2020

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A lively and thoughtful memoir that, one hopes, will inspire readers to pursue activism in every realm of society.

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PERSIST

The Massachusetts senator and financial reformer recounts several of her good fights over the years.

Famous for being chided for “persisting” on the Senate floor, Warren is nearly a byword for the application of an unbending, if usually polite, feminism to the corridors of power. Though she has a schoolmarm-ish air—and indeed taught school for much of her life—she gladly owns up to liking a beer or two and enjoying a good brawl, and she’s a scrapper with a long memory. In 2008, when she shopped a proposal to found a federal agency that “could act as a watchdog to make sure that consumers weren’t getting cheated by financial institutions,” she encountered a congressman who “laughed in my face.” She doesn’t reveal his name, but you can bet he crosses the hall when she’s coming the other way. Warren does name other names, especially Donald Trump, who, with Republicans on the Hill, accomplished only one thing, namely “a $2 trillion tax cut that mostly benefited rich people.” Now that the Democrats are in power, the author reckons that the time is ripe to shake off the Trump debacle and build “a nation that works, not just for the rich and powerful but for everyone.” She identifies numerous areas that need immediate attention, from financial reform to bringing more women into the workplace and mandating equal pay for equal work. Warren premises some of these changes on increased taxes on the rich, happily citing a billionaire well known for insider trading, who complained of her, “This is the fucking American dream she is shitting on.” The author reverts to form: “Oh dear. Did I hit a nerve?” Warren’s common-sensical proposals on housing, infrastructure development, and civil rights merit attention, and her book makes for a sometimes-funny, sometimes–sharp-tongued pleasure.

A lively and thoughtful memoir that, one hopes, will inspire readers to pursue activism in every realm of society.

Pub Date: May 4, 2021

ISBN: 978-1-250-79924-1

Page Count: 320

Publisher: Metropolitan/Henry Holt

Review Posted Online: May 2, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: tomorrow

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