In the summer of 1948, Ben Carlin drove down a Manhattan boat ramp into the Hudson River, turned east toward the Atlantic Ocean, and set out to circle the world in a surplus WWII amphibious army jeep he called the Half-Safe.
Onlookers and experts called him crazy. Delusional. Suicidal.
But he was consumed by the idea, and unstoppable. Fueled by hand-rolled cigarettes and adrenaline, the Australian army major pushed his tiny, claustrophobic vehicle toward fleeting fame through Atlantic storms, uncharted Middle Eastern desert, dense South-East Asian jungle and the icy North Pacific.
The journey was a 50,000-mile roll of the dice that by all rights should have killed him.
Based on years of research and interviews, The Last Great Australian Adventurer is the unbelievable story of Carlin's obsession, his record-making adventure, and his ultimate triumph and tragedy, told in its entirety for the first time. It includes 16 pages of photos, most never before published.
A study in tenacity, perseverance and at times stupidity." —Sydney Daily Telegraph
Listen to me talk about Ben Carlin on ABC Radio Perth
The awful ordeal of a cramped, damp journey around the world is brought to life in this thrilling saga. Bass’ achievement is that it makes you wish you had met Ben Carlin.” —The West Australian
So strange and bizarre that you’d be forgiven for questioning its accuracy...a fine read about a difficult soul and his amazingly hard journey...." —100% Rock Magazine
Buy the Book
The Last Great Australian Adventurer is published by Random House Australia. It's available at booksellers in Australia and through online retailers everywhere else.
The work is a great achievement." —Peter Dowding, Former Premier of Western Australia
The Last Great Australian Adventurer: Ben Carlin's Epic Journey Around the World by Amphibious Jeep by Gordon Bass | Paperback | 384 pages | 16 pages of b/w and color photographs | Published by Random House Australia, 31 July 2017 | ISBN 9781925324990