Dark Waters finalist for ForeWord Reviews 2012 Book of the Year Awards

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March 11, 2013—ForeWord Reviews is pleased to announce the finalists for the 2012 Book of the Year Awards. The finalists were selected from 1300 entries covering 62 categories of books from independent and academic presses. These books represent some of the best books produced by small publishing houses in 2012. For a full list of the finalists, searchable by genre, visit:botya.forewordreviews.com/finalists/2012/. Continue reading

Outside Magazine Q&A

It’s not often the media allows you to scratch below the surface of an expedition. Normally they just want the facts, best and worst moments, quarrels between team members – the usual tabloid drama. This time I got to delve a little deeper, revealing, amongst other things, regret for not valuing time with my late father. He tried introducing me to the wilderness, but as an immature teenager with authority issues I didn’t care.

My loss. My Perfect Adventure >>

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The Expedition Book 2 – A Dodgem Ride in the Twilight Zone

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August 2. Wind: SSE 30 knots. Heading: 210M. Position: 12°48’68”S
 152°35’42”E

The morning of the fifteenth day breaks cold and dreary with relentless rain, the ocean windswept. An eerie blue light penetrates the cabin, revealing a silhouetted form that sways in the half-light. Eyes closed, fist propping up her chin, April dozes as she pedals. A green lava-lava tied across the stern window is ready to catch her head when it falls.

The wind has veered to south-southeast in the night, and freshened to thirty knots with forty-knot gusts. The best we can now manage is 210 degrees magnetic, taking us diagonally over the backs of the sweeping rollers, some of which shape-shift into spitting balls of liquid rage and target the cockpit with laser-like precision. We’re back to being constantly wet and longing for the sun. This voyage is becoming a dodgem ride in the Twilight Zone, I scribble in my journal, with complimentary buckets of water dumped over our heads… Continue reading

The Expedition Book 2 – Reefs and Cabbages

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July 28. Wind: SSE 25 knots. Heading: 180M. Position: 11°30’13”S
 155°06’78”E

I stare in disbelief at the two-tone screen of the GPS. In the past 24 hours we’ve lost forty-two miles west, and gained only a handful south. Disaster looms once more. To avoid running aground on the reef east of Tagula, we need to make fifteen miles south over the next fifteen hours. The likelihood of this happening is slim given the recent trend.

All we can do different is try to increase our RPMs. April ups hers from forty to forty-five. I aim for fifty-two. We also shorten the daytime shifts from three to two hours, and the night-time ones from four to three to optimize performance. Continue reading

The Expedition Book 2 – A Woman’s Best Friend

July 18, 2000. Wind: ESE 5 knots. Heading: 265M. Position: 09°11’78”S
 159°40’14”E

We steer a course for the northern tip of Savo Island, its trademark splodge of cloud hovering overhead. “Don’t go south of it,” the police chief on Tulagi had warned. “Militias use Savo to run weapons and food to Guadalcanal.” Making a detour this early on in the voyage is somewhat inconvenient, especially with the trades gathering strength, but with Cairns over eleven hundred miles away, an extra ten won’t make much of a difference.

The wind is light. A gentle swell rolls in astern. The conditions are near perfect for April to start acclimatizing to life on the briny. For now, she looks happy and relaxed—perhaps a little too relaxed.

“It’s a lot easier than I thought it would be,” she laughs, pedalling with her hands behind her head. “If I had a pillow back here I could just drift off!”

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THE EXPEDITION wins the 2012 Southern California Book Festival Award!


2012 SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA BOOK FESTIVAL NAMES WINNERS

HOLLYWOOD, CA (October 17, 2012)  The story of a man’s amazing journey trying to circle the world using just the power of the human body has been selected as the grand prize winner of the 2012 Southern California Book Festival, which honors the best books of the fall.

“The Expedition: The True Story of the First Human-Powered Circumnavigation of the Earth” is the first of an anticipated trilogy by Jason Lewis, the intrepid globe trotter. Lewis used his expedition to reach out to thousands of school children, calling attention to their shared responsibility for the earth.

But the book is also a tale of human triumph and foibles, and is laugh-out-loud funny at times, gripping adventure in others. The page-turning work is thoroughly entertaining. Continue reading

The Expedition book 2 – The Pirate and The Cabbage

We slipped the lines at first light.

“Goodbye everybody,” I said, shoving Moksha away from the dock with my foot.

A handful of early shift workers from the fish depot had gathered to gawp. “Goot-bigh,” muttered one in disbelief, his eyes popping out at what he was seeing. No motor? No sail? All the way to Australia? “Dispela boi bagarapim het,” he whispered to his friends. This bloke must be buggered in the head.

April and I had spent the week since her arrival readying for the final push to Australia, scrubbing corrosion from metal fittings, and lubricating moving parts. A few modifications to the boat were needed, like using a spatula to position a magnifying lens in front of the compass, allowing April to read the degree markers. And in the event I disappeared overboard, she received a crash course in navigation, and proper use of a lifejacket, flares, and one of the RAF rescue mirrors to signal aircraft. Continue reading