John Aldridge & Anthony Sosinski: Hachette Speakers Bureau

John Aldridge & Anthony Sosinski

In the dead of night on July 24, 2013, some 40 miles off the coast of Long Island, lobster fisherman John Aldridge fell off the deck of his boat, the Anna Mary, as his fishing partner, Anthony Sosinski, unknowingly slept below. A mere speck in the sea, Aldridge faced the overwhelming likelihood that he would not survive.

The next morning, once Sosinski awakened, a massive and desperate search began, involving the United States Coast Guard and the local, tight-knit Montauk fishing community. Some 12 hours later, after fending off sharks, attacks by sea birds, and the ocean itself, Aldridge was miraculously spotted by a Coast Guard helicopter and, against all odds, rescued.

On May 23, 2017, Aldridge and Sosinki will tell their incredible story in a memoir: A Speck in the Sea: A Story of Survival and Rescue (Hachette Books).

A Speck in the Sea intertwines Aldridge’s wrenching first-person account of his struggle in the sea along with Sosinski’s narration of the rescue operation, hour by tormented hour. Readers will follow as Aldridge flies overboard in the middle of the night and candidly assesses his grim situation after seeing his boat, on autopilot, recede out of sight. They will feel Sosinski’s terror as he wakes to realize his fishing partner – and childhood best friend – has mysteriously vanished in the middle of the North Atlantic. Readers will be in suspense as sharks circle Aldridge for their next meal and will feel hopeful as he realizes a friend’s string of lobster traps may be reachable and ultimately makes the life-saving decision to swim towards them. And they will rejoice when Aldridge, who was not wearing a lifejacket, discovers his fishing boots can be filled with air and used as a flotation device, which “changes everything,” writes Aldridge.

A Speck in the Sea also provides a fascinating look into the inner workings of the US Coast Guard’s Command Center in New Haven, CT, and how the information provided by Sosinski helped them to coordinate the air-and-sea search which covered roughly 700 square miles, more than half the size of Rhode Island.

Along with the Coast Guard operation, A Speck in the Sea shows how the tight-knit Montauk fishing community rallied to come together, with dozens of fishing boats voluntarily aiding in the search after news got out that “Johnny is missing.”

The dramatic sea rescue of Aldridge made national headlines in 2013 and was the subject of a cover story in the Sunday Magazine of The New York Times (Jan. 2, 2014). The story has also been optioned for film and is now in priority development with Blumhouse Productions. Jason Blum (Academy Award nominee for Whiplash, Emmy winner for The Normal Heart) and
Rachael Horovitz (Academy Award nominated for Moneyball, and Emmy and Golden Globe winner for Grey Gardens) are producing.

A story of survival and perseverance, A Speck in the Sea tells the story of John Aldridge’s struggle to survive as his best friend and fishing partner, the local community and the service men and women of the United States Coast Guard all came together to bring him home.

John Aldridge and Anthony Sosinski co-­own and operate the Anna Mary, a lobster fishing boat, in the open ocean surrounding Montauk. Best friends for decades, Aldridge and Sosinski are seasoned sailors and fishermen.

“Sometimes being a hero means just hanging on and having faith… This is an amazing tale of survival, family, community and friendship from two true American originals.”

-Paul Tough, The New York Times bestselling author

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