Sam is a forty something stock broker who is tired of his job. For years he has dreamed of sailing off to the tropics and has been preparing his sailboat for just such an escape. His dream includes a woman, but he has been divorced for years and has no girlfriend or prospects. So he puts an ad in an online boating magazine for a female sailing partner and agrees to meet the first woman to respond. She is a former model and beyond his wildest dreams. But she is gay. Not only that, she has four gay women friends who also want to go sailing with him. Reluctantly, he agrees to meet with him and soon finds that he likes them very much. One straight man in a small sailboat in tropical waters with six gay women who are all former models? This was definitely not his dream. After a considerable amount of convincing, he eventually agrees to take them on his journey. Before they leave they meet an eleven year old girl who is sailing with her alcoholic parents to the same destination, and the two boats set sail together for the South Seas. So begins an action filled adventure with unexpected dangers, surprises and a deadly mystery that unfolds when they reach American Samoa.
An overall solid novel, with maybe a bit too much going on in some parts. It all seemed just a bit far-fetched and maybe more of a guy novel. There are many characters and I found them to range from extremely likable to ones I could take or leave. It took a bit to get into this one, but once it got going, the pacing was spot on and the action/mystery really elevated the story.
Mr. Smith retired early and went sailing in the Pacific by himself. He lived on the sailboat for nearly ten years while sailing along the West Coast from Seattle to central Mexico. During that time he wrote a number of novels while in anchorages or marinas. The books remained untouched for years on disc. Last year his wife discovered them and after reading one insisted that he publish it. After considerable editing, he published Baker’s Dozen through his daughter’s publishing company, Red Frog Publishing. Since then, he has published three others, including Only in a Dream.
He has two daughters who live in Los Angeles. His wife of five years is the primary editor of his books. She has a son who lives in Las Vegas. They live in the Phoenix area in the winter and spend summers at their cabin in the White Mountains of Arizona or on the road in their motor home. They have two small dogs.