Andrew Jampoler’ thorough research into every aspect of this tragedy has lifted the story of the Amphitrite’s ill-fated voyage out of the simple category of ‘disasters at sea’ and fixed it in its fascinating historical and social context. His obvious enthusiasm for his subject shines through every sentence of this beautifully written book.— Jean Hood
The tragic loss of the convict ship Amphitrite is the centerpiece of Horrible Shipwreck!, but it is far from the whole story. Andrew Jampoler’s engagingly written book ranges over many places from Scotland to France, from America to Australia. Like all good maritime history it covers many fields, including justice, climate, and medicine as well as life in the convict transports and the dangers of the sea. It is well worth reading.
By Brian Lavery, Curator Emeritus, National Maritime Museum Greenwich
Jampoler has rescued a truly extraordinary bit of history from unjustified obscurity, and done it full justice in this very well researched book. The story, as revealed, is a tragedy in the true sense of the word, and not the least of the author’s accomplishments is to restore the dignity and humanity of many of those who lost their lives in the wreck. It’s an enviable achievement.
This fascinating heartbreaking story of the shipwreck that rocked a nation is much more than an epic tale of the sea; it is a pain-stakingly researched, wonderfully written account of how a disaster brings out the best and the worst in all of us.Books by Nataniel Philbrick