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An Evening with David Grann
Thursday, April 20, 2023 @ 5:00 pm
265 Aragon Ave., Coral Gables, United States
Books & Books and The Prologue Society present AN EVENING WITH DAVID GRANN discussing his new book The Wager: A Tale of Shipwreck, Mutiny and Murder (Doubleday, $30)
Please join us and The Prologue Society in welcoming #1 New York Times bestselling author of Killers of the Flower Moon, David Grann at Books & Books in Coral Gables! He will discuss The Wager (Doubleday, $30), a page-turning story of shipwreck, survival, and savagery, culminating in a court martial that reveals a shocking truth. This event is FREE and open to the public. Please note that seating is limited so we encourage you to RSVP early and only if you intend to join us. Books will be available that evening and Mr. Grann will autograph copies after the talk.
About the Book: On January 28, 1742, a ramshackle vessel of patched-together wood and cloth washed up on the coast of Brazil. Inside were thirty emaciated men, barely alive, and they had an extraordinary tale to tell. They were survivors of His Majesty’s Ship the Wager, a British vessel that had left England in 1740 on a secret mission during an imperial war with Spain. While the Wager had been chasing a Spanish treasure-filled galleon known as “the prize of all the oceans,” it had wrecked on a desolate island off the coast of Patagonia. The men, after being marooned for months and facing starvation, built the flimsy craft and sailed for more than a hundred days, traversing nearly 3,000 miles of storm-wracked seas. They were greeted as heroes.
But then … six months later, another, even more decrepit craft landed on the coast of Chile. This boat contained just three castaways, and they told a very different story. The thirty sailors who landed in Brazil were not heroes – they were mutineers. The first group responded with countercharges of their own, of a tyrannical and murderous senior officer and his henchmen. It became clear that while stranded on the island the crew had fallen into anarchy, with warring factions fighting for dominion over the barren wilderness. As accusations of treachery and murder flew, the Admiralty convened a court martial to determine who was telling the truth. The stakes were life-and-death—for whomever the court found guilty could hang.
The Wager is a grand tale of human behavior at the extremes told by one of our greatest nonfiction writers. Grann’s recreation of the hidden world on a British warship rivals the work of Patrick O’Brian, his portrayal of the castaways’ desperate straits stands up to the classics of survival writing such as The Endurance, and his account of the court martial has the savvy of a Scott Turow thriller. As always with Grann’s work, the incredible twists of the narrative hold the reader spellbound.
About the Author: DAVID GRANN is the author of the #1 New York Times bestsellers Killers of the Flower Moon and The Lost City of Z. Killers of the Flower Moon was a finalist or the National Book Award and won an Edgar Allan Poe Award. He is also the author of The White Darkness and the collection The Devil and Sherlock Holmes. Grann’s investigative reporting has garnered several honors, including a George Polk Award. He lives with his wife and children in New York.