Thursday, May 27, 2010

A Captain's Duty

A Captain’s Duty is a riveting, exhilarating read that I wholeheartedly recommend. Richard Phillips, the captain whose ship was taken by Somali pirates and who became their captive in exchange for the safety of his crew, tells his story.

I knew a story about pirates would be exciting, but I had no idea just how much I was going to be drawn into the book. Phillips is an unbelievable protagonist; his calm head in the harrowing situations and his ingenuity in misleading the pirates to protect his crew are awe-inspiring. A Captain’s Duty is a thriller, made all the more exciting because it’s true. I cannot wait for the movie that will inevitably be made about this: Hollywood won’t need to change a thing.

Phillips’s voice carries through the entire book; it is clear that he did the writing, rather than relying on a ghostwriter. Phillips is a storyteller, but his voice and his jokes also convey that he’s a normal guy—one you’d want to be your next-door neighbor.

Throughout reading this book, I was debating what to rate it. Though I loved it almost immediately, it was one told simply and will probably not live down as a classic. But when I teared up reading of Phillips’s rescue (despite knowing that it would happen), it sealed it: I’m giving A Captain’s Duty a 5/5. You should read it.

Watch Jon Stewart’s interview with Richard Phillips (If I haven’t convinced you to read the book, you should at least watch this.)

Buy the Book


  1. You've convinced me! I'm adding this book to my list to buy once I've finished exams and have time for fun vacation reading! By the way, I'm a big fan of this blog in general. I think it's a brilliant idea and love reading your posts. When you get closer to the end of the year, you should definitely email the Daily Show with a link. Maybe you'd get a response from Jon!
    - Lane

  2. Thanks, Lane! It's nice to know that someone's reading this.
    I can't wait to see you again when you come back to the states!