LEIGH FORBES: Books of all Sorts

Attention All Shipping

Charlie Connelly

A funny and charming travelogue of the shipping-forecast areas. Charlie Connelly visits those places (on land) that he feels best reflect their adjacent forecast areas. Starting of on the Norwegian island of Utsira, he travels clockwise around the UK (via Basque country) to Iceland, reporting on the local people, their history and customs, as he goes.

Occasionally Connelly’s sometimes laddish humour wears a bit thin, especially, on one occasion, when he ruined a poignant observation with a cheap joke. However, the latter half of the book is more reflective, so it’s worth sticking with it if you find the humour a bit much to start with. For the most part, “Attention All Shipping” is thoughtful, informative, and laugh-out-loud funny, and has made me want to follow in his footsteps.

I recommend this for any lover of the British Isles, particularly if you’ve ever used the end of Radio 4’s daily long-wave broadcast as your cue to go to sleep.

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