In the Heart of the Sea: The Tragedy of the Whaleship Essex
by Philbrick, Nathaniel
This epic story inspired the climactic scene in Herman Melville’s "Moby Dick". In 1820, the 238-ton "Essex" was rammed and sunk in the South Pacific by an enraged sperm whale. Taking to the boats, the 20-man crew travelled more than 4,500 miles, battling the sea, and sometimes losing to hunger, thirst, disease, and fear.