June 15, 2021

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Sailing: “The Atlantic in troubled waters”, thriller in the open sea

2 min read



The association of medical writers has a new member, working on an unexpected operating field, far from the stories of medical offices that are the ordinary of the association. Doctor Jean-Yves Chauve, official doctor for many major ocean races, including the Vendée Globe, has chosen to dip his pen in an ocean tinged with black. He drew a thriller about offshore sailing, a universe usually more conducive to adventure stories than news items.

The book begins with a drama that has nothing to do with the land police, since it is about the shipwreck of Manu, competitor in a race around the world alone. This race started from England, but any resemblance to the Vendée event is anything but fortuitous. In this first part of the story, we find everything that makes the event so great, starting with the most difficult: finding the financial means to live out your dream and… leave. The hero sacrificed everything, including his couple, to weigh anchor and his entire life sinks with his boat.

→ MAINTENANCE. Damien Seguin: “On the Vendée Globe boats, we are all disabled”

The thriller chapter begins several hundred miles away, aboard another rather slow sailboat, with strange stopovers. The last one led the skipper to embark a passenger in the Azores, just to share the last edges, before an arrival in Brittany which promises to be stormy for reasons that we can glimpse little by little, as this ill-matched crew gets closer. of its destination.

An enigmatic skipper

Their budding relationship is soon tinged with suspicion, as the young woman discovers inconsistencies between the speech and the ship’s logbook. What is hiding this mysterious sailor who seems to be much more than a simple skipper conveyor of sailboats belonging to yachtsmen too old to face the Atlantic? What do those brown spots at the bottom of a bunk mean? And why the skipper simulates deafness vis-à-vis the distress signal emanating from a racing sailboat?

We will not say more so as not to reveal the author’s batteries, who had fun imagining marine twists that make this original thriller a very pleasant moment to read. Regulars of the genre will find their account there, as will sailing and ocean racing enthusiasts. This little-known universe is meticulously described there, without giving in too much to the mania for unnecessary detail: bad weather fortunes, mechanical problems, health problems, difficult choices of course, everything is there, without heaviness. Obviously, it does not end well for everyone, but it is the common law of sport and thriller.

→ PODCAST. Isabelle Autissier: “When sailing, superstition is never far away”

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