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Old July 14th, 2009, 09:46 PM
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Default Cruise Confidential A Review

As some of you know, I won a contest that Paul Motter set up. My prize was the new book by Brian David Bruns

With Paul's blessing, I would like to review it for you.

I love to read, and always seem to have a book with me, no matter where I am, but this one was one that I could not take with me, for fear of forgetting where I was. It was that interesting.

Mr. Brun writes about his adventures while working as a crew member for Carnival Cruise Lines.

In the beginning, I thought it would be your typical How to book, but there is nothing typical in this book.

It not only tells you what some of the crew is doing when not on duty, it gives you an idea of what the crew has to go through in their everyday lives.

Do you love the Legend, Conquest, fantasy? This is the book for you.

He also talks about those passengers we are always talking about, who eat to much, and generally act like fools. It was so realistically told, that I was as embarrassed to read it, as I am when I actually see it.

This is a great read for those who enjoy the behind the scenes look at cruising, but would not be good for those who get offended by the crew having a case of condom placed on the ship, every time they are in home port.

The book left me wanting more. Ladies, there is a love story entwined in the story, but the two loves do not go off into the sunset.
In the last hour, I have been able to talk to the author,(I love the Internet) and he assures me that the sequel is in the works, so hopefully we will find out if it ended in love, or not.

Gentleman, Read it anyway. It was written by a man, so how romantic can it be.

Now I know where my cabin steward is when I need him in the middle of the night.

I understand that this book can be found at all the major book stores, and on line. I suggest you get it, and see for yourself.

I will never walk by another net covered hot tub again, without thinking of this book.

Enjoy.....

Luanne
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Old July 14th, 2009, 11:47 PM
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Sounds interesting - what's the name of the book?
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Old July 15th, 2009, 01:57 AM
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Cruise Confidential A Hit Below The Water Line
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Old July 15th, 2009, 09:37 AM
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Sounds like a good book I will have to check it out. Thanks for the review.
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Old July 15th, 2009, 10:18 AM
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Try your local library. My daughter put in a reserve for this book and picked it up just the other day.
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Old July 15th, 2009, 10:23 AM
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I bought it for my husband for Father's Day, and read it myself!
I really enjoyed it and can't wait for a sequel.
Sure makes you appreciate the hard work that your wait staff put in to make your cruise a pleasant one.

donna
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Old July 15th, 2009, 04:47 PM
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Great review Luanne,
I will look for it next time I go to a bookstore. Thanks .


jojo
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Old July 21st, 2009, 09:22 AM
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I am more than half way through the book and now will definitley change some of the way I behave on the ship. However, it is leaving a bad taste in my mouth for Carnival management - or lack there of. It almost seems like the inmates running the asylum. The way that he is treated on the Conquest by management is what gave me the bad taste. He must have known he was going to write a book as no person in their right mind would stay on.
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Old August 4th, 2009, 12:20 AM
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I just finished this book.
I am sorry but I really don't believe that he had such a time on Carnival. I cannot believe that they would treat people like that and expect them to stay on the ship. If this is true then shame on Carnival, they should be reported to whoever deals with labor laws internationally.

As I said, I think this is for the most part fiction and really wish I hadn't wasted my money!!!

Jenn C
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Old August 4th, 2009, 03:45 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jennc
I just finished this book.
I am sorry but I really don't believe that he had such a time on Carnival. I cannot believe that they would treat people like that and expect them to stay on the ship. If this is true then shame on Carnival, they should be reported to whoever deals with labor laws internationally.

As I said, I think this is for the most part fiction and really wish I hadn't wasted my money!!!

Jenn C
Yesterday, I finished the book. I do believe it is a fairly factual account of how Carnival handles the staff. Below decks is a very different world than what the passengers see. Many of the things he wrote about, including the drinking and sex are things I have heard from bartenders and room stewards.

The world below decks is very "cliquish" and the "paisano" system is the standard.

There is a reason that no American has completed a contract on a foreign flagged ship. There is discrimination everywhere.

Having said that: I didn't care for his writing style and I know that I wouldn't have put up with what he did especially for a woman who wasn't too loving when they finally got together.

I also now know why they don't want passengers using the crew stairways.

Take care,
Mike
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Old August 8th, 2009, 04:36 PM
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There is an element of truth to what he writes, if you believe that the 5% of reality he writes about is all there is to cruise ship life.

As someone who worked on cruise ships for almost two years, including on the Norway (which was NCLs biggest ship before Carnival had a ship of that size) let me explain it to you like this...

The book talks about a lot of things that go on cruise ships, but he totally sensationalizes the "exciting bits" and leaves out the 95% of life on a ship that is just routine - getting up, showering, working, sleeping and time off.

The time off you have on a cruise ship is limited, but a lot of them spend it in the crew bar or partying in their cabins. They drink and talk - big deal. There is not nearly as much sex as he wants you to believe. I would say there is less than what you find on a college campus.

Why? Because on a college campus you have maybe 40,000 students plus a cilvilian population. On a cruise ship you have the same 1500 crewmembers on for 6 months. Most of the female crewmembers are very careful about their reputations and they do not sleep around. There is a lot of pairing up in short term relationships, however. Naturally, most of them are single (or at least think they are while they are onboard).

Yes, the men are less worried about reputation - no surprise there. The fact that every woman he met was "hot" in looks and desire is a total fabrication meant to appeal to readers who really don't know what it is like to work on a ship.

I personally thought the book was repetitious and boring, but that is because of what I just said, that he was totally exagerating the "wild" side of things. They happen, but NOT at all to the degree he writes. But to write the truth would be boring, right?

As to perceived discrimination against him. To me he acts like a typical spoiled American who feels self-entitled and expects special treatment. He keeps saying "I thought we had a deal" to the supervisors who won't promote him after less than a year at his job, but he wants to advance ahead of people who have worked on the ship for years who also want to advance. I disliked that side of his chracter a great deal and I would never chalk it up to discrimination.

yeah, maybe they "promised" him things, but guess what - not every society works like ours. In America everyone expect you to "honor their feelings" and "be real with me" but in some societies people say things they don't mean when you ask for special favors and if you don't understand that then you are the only one to blame. He is naive and egocentric. I personally couldn't read more than a page or two at a time without thinking almost anything else would be more interesting.

I'm waiting for the first real book about cruise life to come along - so far most of them have been written by egocentric young American men. Most crewmembers are not American and don't have the perpsective these guys have had. You have to account for the multicultural aspect of ship life to really understand crewmember dynamics.
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Old August 8th, 2009, 05:06 PM
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I totally agree with your comments.
JennC
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