Sea of Dangers

Front Cover
Penguin Group Australia, Aug 31, 2009 - History - 432 pages

Two ships set out in search of a missing continent: the St Jean-Baptiste, a French merchant ship commanded by Jean de Surville, and the Endeavour, a small British naval vessel captained by James Cook.  Distinguished historian Geoffrey Blainey tells the story of these rival ships and the men who sailed them.  Just before Christmas 1769, the two captains were almost close enough to see one another – and yet they did not know of each other's existence.  Both crews battled extreme hardships but also experienced the euphoria of 'discovering' new lands.  Sea of Dangers is the most revealing narrative so far written of Cook's astonishing voyage.  It also casts new light on the little-known journey by de Surville; Blainey argues that he was in the vicinity of Sydney Harbour months before Cook arrived.

'A master storyteller's account of the way fantasy and rumour have driven science and exploration' - Weekend Australian

'Blainey's characteristic curiosity raises new questions about Cook and his reputation' - The Age

What people are saying - Write a review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - questbird - LibraryThing

Geoffrey Blainey returns to his comfort zone, the winds and waters of the southern seas. He documents the voyages of two European mariners, Cook and de Surville, whose vessels passed unknowingly ... Read full review

SEA OF DANGERS: Captain Cook and His Rivals in the South Pacific

User Review  - Kirkus

Prolific Australian historian Blainey (A Short History of the Twentieth Century, 2006, etc.) revisits the epic journey of Capt. James Cook's Endeavour and a parallel voyage by a French ship.The author ... Read full review

Other editions - View all

About the author (2009)

Professor Geoffrey Blainey is one of Australia's most prolific and popular historians. He has written more than forty books, including The Tyranny of Distance, Triumph of the Nomads, A Shorter History of Australia, The Rush That Never Ended, and the international bestseller A Short History of the World, which was published in a score of lands as far apart as Brazil, India, Spain and China. He has served the federal government as chairman of the Commonwealth Literary Fund, the Australia Council for the Arts, the National Council for the Centenary of Federation, and the Australia-China Council.

At the United Nations in New York, in 1988, Professor Blainey received the celebrated Britannica Prize 'for excellence in the dissemination of knowledge for the benefit of mankind'. A recipient of Australia's highest honour, Companion in the Order of Australia (AC), he has been officially listed for two decades by the National Trust as a 'National Living Treasure'. He is married to the well-known biographer Ann Blainey.

Bibliographic information