The Cruise of the Jest
by Jon Adams
Slack Water Press

"As he went forward to raise his sails, he thought that putting to sea was a convenient way of solving at least some problems."

Anchored in factual notations which were transcribed and edited from his mother's journal, Jon Adams recreates a coming-of-age-journey in The Cruise of the Jest—a fictional embellishment of his family's four-year-long world cruise on a 57-foot boat which embarked from San Francisco in March of 1961.

As the story unfolds, the reader is equipped with just the right amount of background information to sufficiently understand the story's central conflict—sixteen year old Skip's intense desire to escape his father's demand... sail the jest (alone) from San Francisco to Hawaii, something Skip could not imagine himself doing. Then, with a splendid sense of poetic irony, while attempting to hide from his father at sea, Skip exceeds his father's expectations by sailing around the world!

From stern-to-stern the story's sense of reality is held in place with the vivid details of the novel's 1960's setting and a third person point of view which creates strong reader identification infused with the depth of a first person narrative and the breadth of an omniscient point of view.

With each port presenting Skip with new situations and choices to make, Adams deftly keeps the story in motion while still allowing adequate time for reader reflection via the inclusion of haiku logbook entries which instill the poetry of the sea throughout the narrative.

Wind out of the north
through Asia and Africa
desert sand on deck

This captivating story will lure readers of all ages with its engaging characterizations and well-plotted actions which sail far beyond traditional thematic elements of a coming-of-age story.<

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