Penguin Book

Force of Nature

Robin Knox-Johnston


In 1968, Sir Robin Knox-Johnston became the first person to ever sail solo, non-stop round the world.  His epic, record-breaking voyage aboard his boat, Suhaili, inspired Ellen Macarthur


Now, at the age of 67 - when most people are settling in to a well-earned retirement – Sir Robin embarked on another gruelling circumnavigation of the globe.  And the sea is not making allowances for his seniority.  Within days of setting off, near hurricane strength storms in the Bay of Biscay capsized his yacht.   3/4 of the entire fleet had to turn back.


At pensionable age, his toughness, determination and zest for life is inspiring.


Hell and High Water is Sir Robin's account of his extraordinary return to the ultra-competitive, punishing world of single-handed round-the-world racing.  It's a story of courage and astonishing resilience played out of thousands of miles of awesome ocean.  Sir Robin’s age makes it a unique achievement.  It's difficult to overstate the physical and emotional strain he subjected himself to. 


The gripping story of his last solo sail around the globe couldn't convey more powerfully the idea that age is no barrier to realising your dreams.  His achievement is a triumph to compare with the most outstanding in sailing history.

Robin Knox-Johnston entered the Merchant Navy at the age of 17, obtaining his Master’s Certificate 8 years later.  Of the 9 starters in the Sunday Times Golden Globe Race in 1968, he was the only one to completer the voyage after 312 days alone at sea and win the trophy for the first single-handed, non-stop circumnavigation.  Since then he has participated in many ocean races including the Whitbread, and in 1994 co-skippered Enza with Sir Peter Blake to set a new record for circumnavigation.  He has been UK Yachtsman of the Year twice, International Yachtsman of the Year in 1995, and was knighted in 1995.   

Publication date
  • Biography and Memoir
32 pages
David Luxton Associates Ltd
David Luxton Associates Ltd
David Luxton Associates Ltd
David Luxton Associates Ltd
Audio (Unabridged)
David Luxton Associates Ltd
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