USA, Caribbean: Seven at Sea

Why a New York city family cast off convention for a life-changing year on a sailboat.

You may think this is just another book about how escaping to sea will change your life – and yes it IS one of those. But what is different about this book is that it’s written from both parents’ perspectives, giving two very different viewpoints of the challenges, trials and joys their new lifestyle choice brings.

Authors Erik and Emily are parents that want to show their five children the world (don’t we all) and are determined to do it. Together the family learn to sail, learn to be cruisers and learn how to make their dream happen becoming a harmonized team on board a tiny sailboat in the tropics. As total beginners to the cruising life the family garner information from those more experienced and enjoy buddy boating until they get their confidence to passage alone.

Anxious to rid themselves of their land life, which was just “surviving”, it’s ironic that their new life on the sea turns out to be much of the same as they go from one repair dilemma to the next. Life on the sea and life on land, while two completely different things, quintessentially translate to each other.

Life at sea is not for everyone, and taking 5 children spanning toddler to teenage years out of their daily routine and out to sea requires a careful balance of compromise and respect.

With chapters from both parents the book gives you an insight into all the facets of family life on board, how each crew member deals differently with certain situations and the dynamics holding the dream together.

This family not only surmounted the impossible by making their dream happen against all the odds, but they returned to shore life 10 months later with the impetus to make that much-needed change of direction back on dry land that they’d been looking for all along.

Essential reading for any family contemplating a life-changing experience.

Seven at Sea
By Erik Orton and Emily Orton

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