I absolutely loved reading "The Man Who Thought Like a Ship." Once I started reading it I knew it was going to devour it. I actually became so enthralled with the story of Dick Steffy that I read the whole book in a day then felt so overwhelmed I read the book a second time over the next two days so I could take my time and feel the history. It was a great book and the story of Dick Steffy is tremendous.
I will say that I was very captivated with the story of Dick Steffy and watching this man's lifelong dreams come true. It reminded me of a true life fairy tale. Watching this landlocked little boy with an interest in ships grow up to become the world's first ancient ship reconstructor was an amazing adventure. Loren Steffy did a great job of making his father very relatable and the pictures in the beginning of the book were a wonderful addition. As the story progressed I felt very connected to Dick Steffy and his family. I was able to understand Dick's desire to work with ships and feel him struggling with the decision over whether or not to pursue his dream or provide stability for his young family. I also loved reading about his sense of humor. When I read the joke about how many men could fit in the "Jesus Ship" from the Sea of Galilee I cracked up. It was a dry wit but I liked it.
The only drawback I had about this ship was the sudden lack of inclusion of Dick's family. During the majority of the book Loren Steffy included his mother, Lucille, his brother, David, and himself in Dick Steffy's adventures. We understood how Dick's adventures with the ships affected his family from Milt Steffy's business to Lucille health to the boys schooling. We read all about their uprooting and relocation to Cyprus to study the Kyrenia ship (crooked aleppo) and the boys homeschooling but once the family returned from Cyprus we didn't really hear much about them again. When AINA became part of Texas A&M and Dick started teaching there we didn't know if his family relocated to Texas or if they stayed in Pennsylvania while Dick taught for his obligatory semester. It felt a little disjointed here because of the sudden lack of family involvement but I assume it's because the boys had grown up and were no longer at home, I just wish it would have been made a little more clear.
I loved reading about the nautical archaelogy and it's creation as an accepted field of study. I love history, especially ancient history, so this was a very pleasant book for me. I am sure I will read it many more times and it has also caused me to take to the internet to Google the Kyrenia ship and other ships that Dick Steffy worked on just to find pictures and more information.
I won this book as a giveaway on GoodReads and it is no doubt the best giveaway book I have ever received. If you have any interest whatsoever in history or ships this book has to go on the must-read list.