Book Review: The Expedition, Book 1 - Dark Waters

| 8/13/2012 11:20:01 AM

The Expedition Book 1 

The Expedition: Book 1–Dark Waters
by Jason Lewis
Available now at BillyFish Books 

Mixing the drama of a travel adventure with philosophical introspection, Jason Lewis’ account of the first human-powered circumnavigation of the earth is, simply put, an absolutely riveting and inspirational read.

In Book 1: Dark Waters—the first of three books to be released one month apart beginning August 1, 2012—Lewis’ 13-year journey begins as he and partner Steve Smith set sail for the United States from Portugal in a custom-built, 26-foot pedal-powered boat they call Moksha. The courage, patience and persistence they display on the three-month journey across the Atlantic is extraordinary, but that’s nothing compared to Lewis’ decision to skate across the United States on roller blades while Smith takes the “easier” option of biking. Each stage of Lewis' journey would easily stand as a lifetime achievement for any other individual, and speaks to the unbelievable dedication and effort required to make it around this beautiful and amazing planet under your own power. 

While the book could easily stand on its own as a straight-forward travel adventure, Lewis smartly recognized his experience as an opportunity to help others recognize their role and responsibility on this planet. The journey offered him the opportunity to speak to hundreds of groups of children in 37 countries, and allowed him to raise $66,500 for a host of humanitarian efforts across the globe. To that end, Lewis’ experience stands as a guide for each of us to reference as we try to learn how to live better with one another, and how to better take care of the only Earth we’ve got. 

expedition map

As one might expect, Lewis' journey across the globe was fraught with danger at nearly every turn. The first major part of the voyage was the Atlantic crossing from Lagos, Portugal to Miami, Florida by pedal boat—an incredible physical, mental and emotional undertaking. As Lewis relates, the act of pedaling across the Atlantic leaves little room for error, and even the seemingly simple task of catching a fish can become an adventure. Here's an excerpt describing Lewis' encounter with a runaway dorado:

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