Dark Wind: A Survivor's Tale of Love and Loss

Gordon Chaplin, Author Atlantic Monthly Press $23 (240p) ISBN 978-0-87113-743-2
Combining a love story with an account of a doomed 1992 sailing trip through the Marshall Islands in the Pacific, Chaplin has written a harrowing memoir of adventure, disaster, guilt and the subsequent anguished search for understanding. Chaplin met Susan Atkinson in the mid-1960s when both were married to other partners. The two couples socialized and their four daughters became friends. By the late 1970s, after the failure of both marriages, Chaplin and Atkinson discovered their love for one another, as well as a mutual passion for sailing. After purchasing a sailboat called the Lord Jim in 1990, they sailed down the Mosquito Coast to Panama. Chaplin intersperses his anecdotes of this voyage with a bittersweet description of a loving relationship and the problems that erupted. He highlights Atkinson's adventurous spirit as well as the apprehension that made her insist on every safety precaution for their trips. Her fears were realized when they were caught in a typhoon off the coast of the barrier reef of Wotho Island. Chaplin decided that they should ride out the storm rather than swim for shore, only 300 feet away. In stark sentences, he describes their last moments on the boat before it was torn apart. In the water, Chaplin and Atkinson came out of their life jackets; Chaplin was washed ashore, but Atkinson drowned. Chaplin questions his decisions and agonizes about his inability to save his lover. His book is an eloquent plea for forgiveness and a haunting reflection on the nature of chance. Agent, Tina Bennett at Janklow & Nesbit. $100,000 ad/promo; author tour; Renaissance audio; foreign rights sold in Italy, Germany, Sweden, Finland, Holland and Norway. (June)
Reviewed on: 05/31/1999
Release date: 06/01/1999
Genre: Nonfiction
Mass Market Paperbound - 240 pages - 978-0-452-28182-0
Prebound-Sewn - 978-0-606-20621-1
Hardcover - 318 pages - 978-0-7531-6551-5
Paperback - 216 pages - 978-0-7531-6552-2
Analog Audio Cassette - 978-1-55927-537-8
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