False Assurances gets to the finish line

Published on August 13th, 2020

by Craig Leweck, Scuttlebutt Sailing News
When Hollywood and sailing meet, disaster typically follows. Luckily, sailing-themed movies are not all as bad as All is Lost, and we did find enough to create our movies to watch during quarantine list. But when the fan favorite of Captain Ron dates back to 1992, it’s hard to find optimism.

However, when Christopher Rosow used the sport as the backdrop for his 375-page book, False Assurances, it totally worked.

I grew up reading the Encyclopedia Brown series of books, so I like the genre, and Rosow also taps into other areas of familiarity when he uses the Marblehead to Halifax Ocean Race as the setting for a violent threat against the United States.

Unlike the movies, the plot and storytelling are believable, and comfort comes from his use of the J/111 sailboat and sailing hubs of Marblehead, MA and Newport, RI. How the threat navigated the organization of the race, and the shortcomings that exist in every US harbor, was disturbing and understanding.

And while protagonist Ben Porter lacks the novelty of boy detective Leroy Brown, I found myself cheering for his humble character to overcome odds, fight through objection, and stay focused to defeat the deadly challenge.

For me, it was a page turner, and it’s the first book of the Ben Porter Series. For more information, click here.

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