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The Starboard Sea (review)

by Hilton Kean Jones on April 12, 2012

in Books

If I were able to write a novel, the kind of novel I’d hope to be able to write is the one I just finished reading, The Starboard Sea, by Amber Dermont.

Usually, I read for entertainment–not quite trash, but definitely escapist stuff. The Starboard Sea is none of that. All of us, in our lives, have done things of which we’re deeply ashamed, things that tragically affect another person’s life, things that we can’t take back. (Well, maybe not that dramatically, but at least we’ve hurt other people, even if only unintentionally.) This book deals with this, on many levels and among a number of people. It offers no easy, glib answers, but it provides a perspective that may be a portal to healing our shame. I think it was Camus who said something about philosophy being best written through fiction. This is a book I’ll remember.

I wouldn’t have ever noticed this book had I not been turned on to it by a blog I regularly read, GuysLitWire. I know, I know…that’s a very butch sounding title, but it’s an excellent blog and every book that I’ve read that they’d recommended I’ve enjoyed. This one, the most. Their post on this book is at

I hope you take a chance on The Starboard Sea: A Novel. It’s excellent. Amber Dermont, the author, is a Vassar grad, currently an associate professor at Agnes Scott College, Decatur, Georgia.

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