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Summary

Chasing a dream is never easy, but if you go far enough, it will set you free.

Captain Liz Clark spent her youth dreaming of traveling the world by sailboat and surfing remote waves. When she was 22, she met a mentor who helped turn her desire into reality. Embarking on an adventure that most only fantasize about, she set sail from Santa Barbara, California, as captain of her 40-foot sailboat, Swell, headed south in search of surf, self, and the wonder and learning that lies beyond the unbroken horizon.

In true stories overflowing with wild waves and constant challenges, at the whim of the weather, of relationships sweet and sour, of nature's marvels and colorful cultures, Liz captures her voyage in gripping detail in this memoir, sharing tales of sailing in high seas, of solitude and surprises, of finding connection to the earth and commitment to living in harmony with it. She witnesses how her dream leads her to understanding the unity of all things.

More than 10 years, 20,000 miles, countless adventures, and one cat later, she's still out there.

©2018 Patagonia Works (P)2019 Random House Audio

What listeners say about Swell

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Not Just For Sailors

When I acquired this book I was looking for stories about sailing, big waves etc. But it’s more than that. In fact it’s not really about that. It’s more about the freedom you get sailing and about the trials Lizzie has over come in her pursuit of adventure.

In some parts you ask why do that and others you want to get on a plane and save her. It’s surprisingly good and I really enjoyed it.

I’d recommend this book to anyone with either a passion for sailing or having a troubled life. Would buy again and listen again.

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Inspirational

If you're looking for a book to inspire you to be take on adventure and be kind to yourself as well s others and the planet. This is it. Loved the book and would reccomend.

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  • J
  • 08-06-21

Thoughtful book

interesting story, well told and with an save the planet Eco theme, but not forcing it.

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Brilliant Liz

Fantastic account of how a person grows while following their dream, and it includes sailing, does it get any better. You are one brave lady, who has connected with her soul through some real tough times and continues to grow. Thanks for sharing

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Great listen with a loveable tone of voice

Great listen, with a great story.
Bit romantic at times but loved her overall story which has a great recall of events.
Her voice is soothing and full of character, makes it a very, very easy listen!!

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geate look at life

Must listen I wish I got this sooner! Thank you Liz for giving us a look into your radical life and making people like me dream big. From other things I have listened to simmer thigs people seem to focus on the rely good things about this life or just the rely bad and forget to tell you what the realty is your book getis the raw highs and lows down well. Your book has inspirers me to do more with my life and try look at myself. I’d recommend this to anyone it’s a great story but very much to females who may need some inspiration in there life’s. iv been hooked on this and have been drawn in every step of the way. And I think its always better when the writer also reads the book. I hope I can dream big and make unique, existing and challenging happen for my self as you have.

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Swell

Enjoyed this book really good story well told with brave honesty.Some of her views on the world i disagreed with but that's good too.

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Amazing story

The tale of Liz Clark’s adventures are epic and an epic escape for the mind!
Inspiration to help get you out there and make things happen.

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  • Mikel marchant
  • 21-01-20

such a disapointment

rich spoiled brat. I had such high hopes for this story. she is what is the matter with this world. I do wish my life was as easy as hers. once again such a disapointment. can you say fraud

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  • Anonymous User
  • 21-08-20

Lame

Imagine the story of a woman overcoming her shortcomings on a mushroom induced trip toward enlightenment. While screwing every local so they work on her boat. I’d imagine Barry was on that list as well.

Breathing and hippie life cures her medical problems story over.

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  • Danger Dave
  • 01-10-20

Greenpeace politics

I wanted to hear about your trip but not your radical politics. You could have woven the politics with some subtlety and I would have finished the book.

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  • Linda K
  • 14-02-21

I could only get through about 1 hour

I usually don't write reviews, but I had to on this one. While I do appreciate the young desire to seek the open seas, the whining accompanied with this story could not keep me engaged. Nor could the supreme entitlement that isn't even acknowledged: a boat gifted, a degree paid by daddy, and the ability to loll in misery on a couch, nurturing sensibilities. Who does this? Not to mention the constant political ramblings of one who is well-embedded in activist positions but is barely old enough to vote. My dollars went to her earnings. Let's talk about those African slave kids mining the cobalt for all of your geo-friendly solar.

I just can't encapsulate the frustration of trying to listen to this crap. Rewrite kid, as an adult.

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  • Russell Ost
  • 23-04-19

Highly recommended!

This is more than a book about a voyage. It's a reflection of personal growth during several trips around the sun. After hearing Lizzy speak at the St Francis Yacht Club, I gave an autographed copy of Swell to my daughter as a college graduation gift.

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  • R. Wendeborn
  • 19-08-19

Not good

I downloaded this book because it was the only book about surfing by a woman but it's not a real uplifting story. Sure, it's loaded with spiritual platitudes and the writer is a talented sailor, surfer, and photographer but she's also deeply flawed. The romanticized ideals she carries for indigenous people (this is evident from the moment she's out of US waters), the woo woo mumbo jumbo spirituality (at its peak, she contacts a pet psychic), and lack of taking responsibility for her own bad decisions (from repairs on her boat to staying in bad relationships, she does it all) are chief among her many flaws. The book is basically a one person Fyre Festival: a social media influencer completely unaware of their own privilege blames the world for her own botched party.

9 people found this helpful

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  • Kate
  • 13-04-19

Absolutely love this book - beautiful!

Highly recommend, stunningly written. I saved so many passages to revisit. Liz Clark has now joined my list of real sheros.

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  • Samruth
  • 20-09-21

Great job Liz!

I have similar environmental and sailing interests and thoroughly enjoyed the journey of Swell’s and Liz’s.

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  • Jeroen Warmerdam
  • 15-09-21

Could not finish

What a terrible story and the way that it is told, keeps me from plowing forth in this book. The drab voice, so uninterested and uninteresting.

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  • Thomas Hensley
  • 06-08-21

great sailing stories

loved all the sailing information. I wish her all the best in future voyages