Lost at Sea

Even before his book The Men Who Stare at Goats was made into a hit movie, Jon Ronson was a bit of a celebrity among journalists for his gonzo explorations of everything from the jet-set class to extremist groups. He keeps that image alive with Lost at Sea, a compilation of strange but fascinating reports that combine to form a somewhat disturbing view of humanity. The stories included vary widely, from interviews with Insane Clown Posse (they live up to their name) and pop star-turned-UFO hunter Robbie Williams, to the consumer-debt crisis in England, and the search for answers about a young woman who went missing from a Disney cruise. If there’s a thread holding it all together, it seems to be people’s willingness to believe in things, no matter how crazy, and other people’s willingness to take advantage of that. But while each story is revelatory—for instance, Ronson writes about mining the insane genius of Stanley Kubrick by rummaging through the thousands of boxes he left behind—there isn’t much linking it to the next, aside from Ronson’s ever-present voice. If you’re curious about the stranger sides of humanity, Lost at Sea offers insight into the strange, deranged and downright manipulative minds among us.