My rating: 4 of 5 stars
I think I probably got this audiobook a few months ago because it was one of Audible’s daily special offers, so I didn’t pay that much attention to what it was about, other than the fact that it was by Jon Ronson and I had listened to another one of his audiobooks and enjoyed it (he narrates them himself, which is always an added bonus). I think though, that with the title ‘Lost at Sea’, I had been expecting a book of sea based mysteries, when actually there was only one sea based story.
Lost at Sea is a collection of Ronson’s stories that he’s worked on as a journalist for the Guardian and as a documentary maker. The stories range from the gently bizarre, such as Robbie William’s interest in aliens to the much more sad and depressing, as in the case of the trial of Jonathan King. I spent much of the book wishing I could be Jon Ronson, able to jet off and interview interesting people I was curious about, such as real life superheroes and the man who faked a career’s worth of record sleeves, but then you see in other stories, like the Jonathan King story or a story about a cult that donated kidneys, the way how some people try to manipulate him.
This book is getting on a little now and some of the stories are a little old (if you like your off the wall news reporting to be very current), there’s a theme running through many of the stories in the book of how the credit crunch affected people and those were amongst the saddest.
Other stories of note were a story about a mass murder attempt in the real life North Pole, somewhere where it is Christmas everyday, the story about disappearances from cruise ships (which are scarily common and under policed), the Frank Sidebottom story (which I vaguely remember from my youth) where it turns out that Ronson used to play keyboard in the band and a story where Ronson interviewed a chain of people where each person in the chain earned five times more than the previous person. All the stories were interesting though (a few a bit graphic and disturbing).