Who can love the spread of canvas and the bend of the oak and not thrill to the names of the great clippers built by Donald McKay? Great Republic, Sovereign of the Seas, Lightening, Star of the Empire, and Westward Ho, these names ring from an era when the windships were the queens of the ocean and the sail was the king. But the most famous, the one that most securely captured the hearts and imaginations of the entire nation, was McKay’s masterpiece, the Flying Cloud.
Here is the story of Enoch Thacher, a boy whose father lost his fortune at sea, who McKay takes on during the lofting, building, and rigging of the Cloud, and who finally ships out on her for her maiden, record-breaking trip around the Horn.
The race to get to California during the gold rush is real, as was the ship, so you feel grounded in reality while following the young man’s exploits. Accompanied by Sperry’s wonderfully vigorous drawings, this realistic and riveting narrative will keep even landlubbers pegged to their seats, while the rich sea-talk and vivid details make you feel like you’re there!
(A 1936 Newbery Honor book)