Jack grows up in Port Glasgow, the shipbuilding centre just down river Clyde from the city of Glasgow itself. After an early tragedy, he rebuilds his life around an old man and his motorboat. Little does he know that this will lead him away on a frightening adventure on the open sea. Along the way he finds friendship as well as making enemies, following a trail that seems to have been laid out for him in advance. He discovers that the highlanders, who’s ancestors were cleared of the land more than a century before, have unfinished business; Jack must decide where his loyalties lie.
In the end the journey is as much about finding out about himself as it is about the wild places and strange people he meets along the way. The story is set in the 1970’s when the older generation were still intimately connected to the Victorian era, an era when people’s fate was at the whim of their landlord. The whim was often cruel and selfish. Many would ague that much remains unchanged to this day!
As a coming of age story I wouldn’t recommend this to anybody under ten to read to themselves but I have read it to children a few years younger who have enjoyed it.