|With vivid words your
Much truth compressing in a narrow space;
Then many shall pursue, but few complain,
And Envy frown, and critics snarl in vain.
| 10.1 Seamanship
Seaworthy, by Robert A. Adriance - Here's the ultimate boater’s guide to preventing, responding to, and surviving accidents under power or sail, including hurricane damage, lightning strikes, collisions, fires, groundings, sinkings, crew overboard, dismastings, and more.
Sailing and Seamanship, U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary
The Arts of the Sailor, by Hervey Garrett Smith, Dover, NY, 1953.
Basic Seamanship & Safe Boat Handling, by Blair Walliser, Doubleday & Co., 1962
Fundamentals of Sailing, Cruising, & Racing, by Stephen Colgate, W.W. Norton, NY, 1978
Fundamentals of Kayak Navigation, by David Burch , written for the sea kayaker, but many techniques which are perfect for the small boat sailor.
Oceanography and Seamanship, by William G. Van Dorn, Dodd, Mead, and Co., NY, 1974
Modern Marlinspike Seamanshi, by William P. MacLean, The Bobbs-Merrill Co., NY, 1979
The Handbook of Knots, by Des Pawson, Dorling Kindersley, NY, 1998
The Oxford Companion To Ships & The Sea, Edited by Peter Kemp, Oxford Press, NY, 1976
Handbook of Trailer Sailing, by Robert F. Burgess, Dodd, Mead & Co., 1984
The Elements of Seamanship by Roger Taylor. This is a reprint of several articles which were published in 'Woodenboat'. The first chapter is 'On Keeping the Water Underneath' and the last is 'On Keeping Your Reputation'. Good stuff.
Compass: A Story of Exploration and Innovation by Alan Gurney. Listen to John Lee of "Books on Tape" read the Prologue of this great book
| 10.2 Boat Design and
|The Folding Schooner -- and other
in Boat Design, Philip C Bolger, 1976, International Marine
Co, Camden Maine, ISBN 0-87742-083-1, Lib of Congress
76-8779 - Every Shallow Water Sailor should be familiar with this book.
Certainly the Dovekie owner should refer to Chapter 24, in which the Dovekie
sketch is published. Iwill never understand how he (and Peter Duff, of
course) transformed that flat bottomed rowboat (as originally designed)into
the fine sailing ballerina it became.
Sensible Cruising Designs - L.F.Herreshoff (with lots of cruising tips, too)
American Small Sailing Craft, by Howard I. Chapelle, Norton, NY, 1951.
The Good Little Ship, by Vincent Gilpin, Sutter House, 1952.
The Sharpie Book, by Reuel B. Parker, International Marine, 1994.
Albert Strange on Yacht Design, Construction, and Cruising - the original canoe yawls
Canoe Rig - Todd Bradshaw - great information on rigs, leeboards, and rudders. Not by any means just for canoe sailors
Boatbuilding - Howard Chappelle - lots of design information, including bow centerboards!
Gougeon Brothers on Boat Construction - the definitive text on epoxy/wood construction
Devlin's Boat Building - solid book on modern techniques
New Plywood Boats - Thomas Firth Jones - fun small boats, and a great chapter on Phil Bolger.
Wooden Boats - Michael Ruhlman - a well-written account of the Gannon and Benjamin boat building business on Martha's Vineyard. You'll want to order one after reading this book!
Boatbuilding for Beginners (and Beyond) by Jim Michalak - Everything You Need to Know to Build a Sailboat, a Rowboat, a Motorboat, a Canoe, and More!, Breakaway Books (July 1, 2002).
| 10.3 Cruising
|Sailing America, A Trailer Sailor’s Guide To
North America, by Larry Brown, Seven Seas Press, Camden, ME, 1990
Cruising Under Sail, by Eric Hiscock, Oxford University Press,1981 - the later paper back editions incorporate "Voyaging Under Sail", which was originally published as the second of 2 hardbound books by Hiscock. Both books are all about his globe circling adventures in a 30 foot wooden boat, including a darkroom in the fore-peak; they contain a lot of very practical, though somewhat dated, advice.
After 50,000 Miles, by Hal Roth, W.W. Norton, NY, 1977
The Compleat Cruiser, L.F.Herreshoff - A literary takeoff on the Walton's, The Compleat Angler, e.g.,"... and now, gentle reader...", but a wonderful guide to 'proper' cruising, simple anchor living, and good shallow water sailing by one of the true artists of boat design. Wonderful stories of cruising the waters around Cape Cod
Racundra's First Cruise, Arthur Ransome - pre-war Baltic cruise
Dinghy Cruising, Margaret Dye - Margaret and husband Frank have cruised many thousand of miles all over the world in their Wayfarer dinghies, sometimes together, sometimes solo. Margaret's current boat of choice is an 11' Gull Spirit which enables her to, "continue my passion to be afloat almost continuously."
Beach Criusing and Coastal Camping, Ida Little - If you can stand the disruptive and know-it-all editior's notes, this is a fun and practical cruising book by a couple who cruised the carribean for 10 years (or more?) in a Hobie 14, towing a sailing canoe which carried their gear. Ah, the simple life.
The Unlikely Voyage of Jack de Crow by A.J Mackinnon. This is a version of mad Englishman sets of on an adventure with no experience when he starts and a great deal when he finishes. Mackinnon is an English teacher and writes well with numerous literary allusions.
Following are books from:
Pen & Ink Press
PO Box 235
753 Snowden Park Drive
Wicomico Church, VA 22579
Narrow Waters - exploring the Atlantic Intracoastal and associated waterways under sail aboard a 30 foot ketch.
Maverick Sea Fare - contains 150 original island recipes from aboard a 76' Brixham Trawler in charter service in the Caribbean, including wonderful “boat drinks” plus the key lime pie recipe.
Above books suggested by Gary Forehand who writes, "My copies of Narrow Waters and Maverick Sea Fare usually end up on a table or chair somewhere between the library and kitchen. What makes these books different are the beautiful illustrations and hand lettered text, a labor of love from author/illustrator Dee Carstarphen. She lives in Virginia and sails a 22' catboat on the Chesapeake Bay.
The Conch Book - history and tales about the Queen Conch.
Windjammer Cooking - a guide to many New England Windjammers, plus recipes from a 120' Gloucester schooner
The Cruising Guide to the New England Coast: Including the Hudson River, Long Island Sound, and the Coast of New Brunswick, Twelfth Edition, by Robert C. Duncan and many others. It's about sailing the New England coast. This book has been updated too many times. Much of the material is very dated. But it is a joy to read for the local stories. Don't get it for up to date cruising information! In fact, any edition is worth reading for the stories. Just ignore phone numbers, addresses, store names, etc. Tide information however is timeless.
Cruising Story Series, by Tristan Jones including:
| 10.4 Nonfiction
Three Men in a Boat (not to mention the Dog) by Jerome K. Jerome, about rowing/cruising on the Thames in the late 1800's. Witty commentary on any number of issues interspersed with really funny stuff. Should be read aloud around the fire.
Return of the Osprey, by David Gessner. - A couple of years well spent observing Osprey on Cape Cod. Beautifully written, carefully observed.
Five Fair Rivers: Sailing the James, York, Rappahannock, Potomac, and Patuxent by Robert De Gast, Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore, 1995 - Inspired to travel in the wake of Captain John Smith, who found "faire and delightful navigable rivers" during his 1612 exploration of the Chesapeake, solo sailor de Gast in his Dovekie, Fiddler, sails, rows and sometimes motors up the shallows of five rivers on the west side of the Bay.
A Voyage Alone in the Yawl Rob Roy by John MacGregor
Two Years Before The Mast, by Richard Henry Dana, Jr., The Heritage Press, NY, 1947 - So you want to know about the life aboard a sailing ship? This is the book for you. To be read from cover to cover every five years or so. To fully enjoy keep The Oxford Companion To Ships & The Sea on hand.
The Perfect Storm, by Sebastian Junger, W.W. Norton, NY, 1997
Chesapeake Odysseys, by Joseph T. Rothrock and Jane Rothrock. - Side by side diaries of grandfather's 1883 cruise on the Chesapeake and that of his granddaughter's 1983 cruise over the same route. Grandfather's account much more compelling, and great glimpse into the nineteenth century on the Chesapeake.
Desperate Voyage, by John Caldwell, Sheridan House, Dobbs Ferry, NY, 1991
Boy, Me and the Cat by Henry Plummer - Account of a cruise in a 24 foot catboat from New Bedford to the Florida Keys in 1912. Hardcover copy has photographs, softcover doesn't. Both have pen and ink drawings by the author. Plummer was quite a character and quite a story teller.
Alone at Sea, Hannes Lindemann - A young physician adds some excitement to his life by crossing the Atlantic in an open dugout, and a foldboat.
Watermen, by Randell S. Peffer, Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore, 1979
Outerbridge Reach, Robert Stone - Story about an around the world sailboat race.
Alone Around The World, by Naomi James, Bara Trading Co., 1979
Magic of the Swatchways, by Maurice Griffiths. A series of short stories written in the 1930's about shallow water sailing in England, complete with leeboards and kick-up rudders.
Presumed Lost, by John Koster, Popular Library, 1978
T. Jay's Log, by T.J. Rockford & Daniel Parr, Carlton Press, 1995
The Town that Died, by Michael J. Bird - A documentary of what actually happened in 1917 when the French Freighter Mont Black, loaded with more then 2,500 tons of high explosives, was hit at low speed by the IMO in the narrow confines of the Halifax harbor in Nova Scotia.
First You Have To Row A Little Boat, by Richard Bode
Sailing in a Spoonful of Water, by Joe Coomer's
In the Teeth of the Northeaster, Marlin Bree, Clarkson N. Potter, Inc, 1988
Godforsaken Sea, Derek Lundy - Story about the 1996-97 Vendee Globe around-the-world race.
In the Heart of the Sea, by Nathaniel Philbrick - The tragedy of the whaleship Essex; for those who love Herman Melvill's Moby Dick, its likely the basis for the novel, but a true story of a bull sperm whale attaching and sinking a whaling ship and the survival of the ship's crew.
Shackleton, Roland Huntford - What might have been a great exploratory journey turned into a raw struggle for survival when Ernest Shackleton's ship became trapped in pack ice, and he was forced to lead his team on a desperate trek across hundreds of miles of the world's most dangerous terrain. He and several of his crew left the others and sailed in an open boat across the antarctic ocean to find help. Miraculously he got back, rescued his entire crew and brought them back to England.
The Curve of Time, by M. Wylie Blanchet. Seal Press, 2001 - The classic memoir of a woman and her children who explored the coastal waters of the Pacific Northwest. This is a quiet and graceful read.
Shantyboat: A River Way of Life, by Harlan Hubbard, 1953 - The story of Hubbard's and wife's building of a shantyboat in the forties and their drift down several rivers into and including the Mississippi. Most likely to find this book used, I believe it is out of print.
Shantyboat on the Bayous, by Harlan Hubbard, The University Press of Kentucky, 1990 - After reaching Louisiana the Hubbards continue on the Intracostal in their shantyboat.
Sailing Alone Around The World, by Captain Joshua Slocum, Century, 1900 (first edition).
Alongshore, by John R. Stilgoe, Yale University, 1994.
Shallow Water Dictionary (A Grounding In Estuary English), by John R. Stilgoe, Princeton Architectural Press, NY, 2004.
Lone Voyager: The Extraordinary Adventures Of Howard Blackburn Hero Fisherman Of Gloucester, by Joe Garland - This is a riveting read, initially describing Howard Blackburn’s successful struggle for survival in a dory fishing boat lost in almost blizzard conditions in the fishing banks of the North Atlantic. Blackburn lost all his fingers, half of both thumbs and several toes to frostbite while his companion succumbed to the privations of several days in an open boat in horrendous conditions. The first few chapters of the book also describe the primitive physical and social conditions of early fishing communities in the Maine coast at the end of the Nineteenth Century.
The rest of the book tells of Blackburn’s life after he was unable to earn a living from the sea, including the complications of running a tavern when the local government changed almost annually from permitting the sale of alcohol to forbiding its sale. Blackburn still sailed the North Atlantic, including a number of single-handed crossings, but as what we would call an “adventure sailor”. The book also tells of Blackburn’s organisation of a boat load of prospective gold miners who were taken by sailing boat from Maine to the Klondike via Cape Horn.
It is the sort of book that you can’t put down unless sleep or some other biological necessity calls urgently.
Tinkerbell: The Story of the smallest boat ever to cross the Atlantic Nonstop, by Robert Manry. Here's a gripping story about a solo crossing of the Atlantic in a small boat. It got me interested in sailing back in the 1960s when power boats dominated my time afloat. It may be out of print. Robert writes of his struggles with many hardships at sea especially those in his mind.
Eastward: A Maine Cruise in a Friendship Sloop, by Roger Duncan and others. This is a cruising story featuring an old wooden Friendship sloop and local stories. It's pace is laid back and it is comfortable to read. It will make one want to cruise the coast of Maine and wonder why they haven't added a Friendship sloop to their fleet, draft considerations aside.
Ralph Stanley: Tales Of A Maine Boatbuilder, by Craig Milner. Ralph builds boats the old way. No Fiberglas for him! He is famous for his Friendship sloops, lobster boats, and Down East stories. As an aside, he makes fiddles. A video is also available comparing the old and new manufacturing technologies of the Friendship Sloop: The Friendship Sloop: A Heritage Retained by Ralph Stanley and Jarvis Newman. It's only fault is that it is only 30 minutes long. With either, you will have a hard time not smiling.
| 10.5 Fiction
The Aubrey-Maturin Series, by Patrick O'Brian including:
The Hornblower Series, by C. S. Forester including:
The Life and Times of Horatio Hornblower, A Biography of C. S. Forester's Famous Naval Hero, by C. Northcote Parkinson, McBooks Press; First American Edition edition (May 1, 2005), originally published hardbound in 1970 (a fictional biography).
The Hornblower Companion, by C.S. Forester, paperback Naval Institute Press (1999), also hardbound published in England in 1964. A factual companion for reading the Hornblower series. Half of the book is Forester's explination of how he came to write the series. The other half is sketch charts and some historical background for each of the books.
The Ramage Series, by Dudley Pope including:
The Bolitho Series, by Alexander Kent including:
The Lewrie Series, by Dewey Lambdin:
The Voyage, by Phillip Caputo. Dark novel about brothers from Maine in late nineteenth century whose father puts them aboard the family schooner in June and says "I'll see you in September". The sailing is great, powerful story about their sail to Cuba via Key West.
The Way of A Ship, by Derek Lundy. Compelling attempt to imagine a voyage around Cape Horn in an iron square rigger.
The Heart of Darkness, Joseph Conrad - Seaman Marlow recounts his journey to the dark heart of the Belgian Congo in search of the elusive Mr. Kurtz. Far from civilization as he knows it, he comes to reassess not only his own values, but also those of nature and society.
The Boat in The Reeds, A.C. Stewart , Bradbury Press, 1970
Killer's Wake, Wild Track, Storm Child - all by Bernard Corwell - Mysteries with mostly good, authentic portions set aboard contemporary ocean sailboats. The sailboat stuff is generally good, the other content can get sappy. I've gotten all of these on books on tape from the library which is a good format for them. Corwell himself sails a classic small boat, a Cornish Crabber replica.
Riddle of the Sands - Erskine Childers, Link to Wikipedia entry.
In the Shadow of the Sands - Sam Llewellyn, a follow-on to "The Riddle of the Sands", although some have criticized it for being less well written and for having a disappointing ending.
Killing Mister Watson – Peter Matthiessen , about the life of South West Floridians in the 1890’s, a must read before attempting the Wilderness Waterway of the Everglades.
The Boat Who Wouldn't Float by Farley Mowat, I've read this many times. I guess my memory is not so good. It's about cruising in a boat with a mind of it's own. Its full of humor if one is in the right state of mind.
Moby Dick by Herman Melville: We've all read it. It's good to have on hand especially for kids. Then take them fishing for a whale with a line and hook.
| 10.6 Fiction for Young Adults
Swallows and Amazons series - Arthur Ransome
Bloody Jack Series, by L. A. Meyer:
Storm Without Rain, by Jan Adkins. Obstensibly a children's story about a boy from modern day Marion, Massachussetts who finds himself suddenly in the year 1900, still in Marion. Great sailing, great history, great family story. The book had been out of print, but the author sent in the following good news: Storm is no longer out of print, but has been picked up with four other Adkins saltwater books by WoodenBoat Books and is once again available. Also revived in print are Moving Heavy Things, Solstice, Workboat, and Line: Tying It Up, Tying It Down.
Line: tying it up, tying it down., by Jan Adkins. This is a basic primer of using line, rope, twine, string and shoelaces.
Wooden Ship, by Jan Adkins. The building of a wooden ship in 1870 becomes a New England vision of purpose, skill and strength.
The Craft of Sail, by Jan Adkins. Provides the underlying basic principles of how sails work. After that, details that might otherwise be confusing or a mere memorization chore fall into place and make sense.
Sarah’s Boat: a young girl learns the art of sailing, by Douglas Alvord. Gr. 3-6. The line between fiction and nonfiction is blurred in this story about Sarah, who is taught to sail by her grandfather and perfects her skills enough to leap from a Puddleduck to a Bluejay sloop.
First Sail: an adventure story designed to help new sailors learn the ropes, by Richard Henderson. A warmly illustrated picturebook. An educational adventure, written to teach young folks how to safely ride a boat out on the waves. Every single page spread has an important selection of facts, vocabulary, knots, or sailing techniques, all with diagrams, all crucial for a brand new sailor just starting out.
Royce's Sailing Illustrated, Vol. 1: The Sailors Bible Since '56, by Patrick M. Royce, ProStar Publications, Annapolis, 1997. - A wonderful teenager's introduction to sailing and seamanship, which has for me remained a useful if nostalgic reference book for life.
One Morning in Maine, by Robert McCloskey, Viking (Penguin Books), NY, 1952.
Time of Wonder, by Robert McCloskey, Puffin (Penguin Books), NY, 1957.
The Gate In The Wall, by Ellen Howard - Howard returns with another successful historical tale featuring a resourceful young girl. Emma Deane is but 10-years-old and already working in a mill to support her sister, her sister's brutish husband, and their child. One day she happens upon a gate by the riverside and enters the world of the canal folk, people who moved cargo up and down the complex system of canals in 19th-century England. She is pressured into service for a Mrs. Minshull after taking one of the woman's potatoes to assuage her hunger. After helping the elderly boatwoman all the way to Manchester, Emma's self-esteem begins to grow. She meets various characters along the way and discovers an incipient talent: painting.