Rick Spilman has spent most of his life around the ships and the sea. Professionally, he has worked as a naval architect (ship designer) for several major shipping lines. An avid sailor, Rick has sailed as volunteer crew on the replica square-riggers “HMS ROSE” and “HMS BOUNTY,” as well as sailing on modern and period vessels along the New England coast, the west coast of Florida, the Caribbean, the Great Lakes and the southwest coast of Ireland. He is also an avid kayaker.
Rick is the founder and host of the Old Salt Blog, a virtual port of call for all those who love the sea. He has been published in the Huffington Post, gCaptain, Forbes online, and several canoeing and kayaking print magazines. He was also a nautical columnist on the Clarion science fiction blog and a Cooley Award Winner in short fiction at the University of Michigan. His video has appeared in the Wall Street Journal on-line and in National Geographic Traveler.
Rick lives with his wife and two sons on the west bank of the Hudson River.
Hell Around the Horn is a nautical thriller set in the last days of the great age of sail. In 1905, a young ship’s captain and his family set sail on the windjammer, Lady Rebecca, from Cardiff, Wales with a cargo of coal bound for Chile, by way of Cape Horn. Before they reach the Southern Ocean, the cargo catches fire, the mate threatens mutiny and one of the crew may be going mad, yet the greatest challenge will prove to be surviving the vicious westerly winds and mountainous seas of the worst Cape Horn winter in memory. Based on an actual voyage, Hell Around the Horn is a story of survival and the human spirit against overwhelming odds.
What Other’s Are Saying About Hell Around The Horn
“Rick Spilman brings alive the rough and tumble world of the windjammer with authentic and well-chosen detail, in a voice that is at once historically authentic, yet fresh as a salty gale. One hand for yourself and one for the ship on this fast-paced and gripping ride.” – Linda Collison, author of the Patricia MacPherson Nautical Adventures.
“Battling against endless contrary gales, constantly struck with disaster and tragedy, the crew of the Lady Rebecca encountered the same privations that hundreds of unsung sailors endured. As well as a story that grips with gathering tension, this book memorializes the gallant windjammer sailors of a largely forgotten era.” – Joan Druett, award winning nautical historian, novelist and author of Tupaia
“A much neglected period of sailing history is brought to life by Spilman’s fast-moving narrative and apt use of fact and detail.” – Alaric Bond, author of the Fighting Sail series of novels.
Other Books By Rick Spilman
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