Wednesday, June 19, 2013

A Captain's Duty: Somali Pirates, Navy SEALS, and Dangerous Days at Sea

I am an avid reader, if you haven't gathered that from the umpteen number of times I've mentioned finishing a book. Recently, my best friend Rose recommended I read "A Captain's Duty" written by Captain Richard Phillips and thank goodness she did. It's an incredible story and reading his first hand account of being held captive by Somali Pirates is riveting.

A 30 year vet, Captain Phillips was a merchant mariner who had completed multiple trips through the Gulf of Aden, but it wasn't until 2009 that he experienced his first, and last, run in with pirates. I'll be the first to say that I'm very rarely a non-fiction reader. I can do biographies when I know the person or have a fondness for the subject matter, but I had never heard of Captain Phillips or had a love for the sea. But, Rose told me it was amazing and I listened to her, so now I'm telling you to do the same.

The biggest thing I took from this book was that you truly don't know who you are or what you're capable of. Phillips mentions over and over again how he wanted his whole ordeal to be over, even if it meant death. To give up and give in, but at the lowest of those moments, he thought of his family and knew he had to push through it. Not that he could push through it, but that he would regardless.

Throughout the book, the reader is shown how incredibly selfless this man is. He became a merchant mariner to see the world, then through his years and experience, earned the position of Captain. He understood what the title and the pay meant, and did all he could to protect his crew and keep them safe, including sacrificing himself.

Ultimately, A Captain's Duty is a book I couldn't put down. I loved the suspense, wondering how he was going to handle the different situations, and being able to completely visualize what Richard Phillips was experiencing as each hour passed, even though I've never been on a cargo ship like his. I loved that he included what was happening to his family and his wife while he was held captive, what they were experiencing and feeling. But, in my opinion, the best part about this book is how it can resonate with anyone (and I say this as a 25 year old female who has been on one cruise) and leave an impression. Here I am, a week later, still thinking about this book and his experiences and how, though I will most likely never be in a situation that demands me to offer myself to Somali pirates, I hope should I ever have to, I could exhibit half the composure and bravery that this man was forced to exude.

1 comment:

  1. I can't wait to read it!! Thanks for recommending :)

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