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Rosie Amber’s Friday Five challenge is to take ONLY FIVE MINUTES to browse an unfamiliar category and select a book based solely on the cover art.

When I feel like exercising I just lie down until the feeling goes away.

I’ve pretty much lived my life according to this precept, supposedly set down by Robert M. Hutchins (philosopher and president of my alma mater, the University of Chicago). So picking the absolutely most new-to-me genre obviously meant choosing Sports & Outdoors [Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Sports & Outdoors > Biographies >Adventurers & Explorers] Only…hang on. Almost immediately I spotted the cover ofimgres one of the best books I’ve ever read: Endurance: Shackleton’s Incredible Voyageby Alfred Lansing. That book, almost single-handedly, taught me virtually everything I ever needed to know about being a successful leader and executive. But… this was supposed to be something new, or at least new-to-me. 

51tp69xZf5L._AA160_I kept scanning the list. My eye was caught by FEARLESS: One Woman, One Kayak, One Continent,  until I noticed that the author was Joe Glickman, so apparently not that woman. I kept scanning book covers.

My five minutes were almost up when I spotted her—Accidental Sailor Girl by Kourtney Patterson. The book blurb promised a young woman’s adventure and coming-of-age story.


Book blurb: Accidental Sailor Girl is a story about a young girl named Kourtney and her journey from starting out with only her car and a surfboard to sailing across the Atlantic on a Gaff Rigged Cutter with a Square Sail named Norna. The story moves from her hardships of living on the beach to buying her first sailboat, a 27 foot Hunter she named “Happy.” Her attitude toward learning how to sail and how to fix up her boat led her to meet Pete Grundvig, a local carpenter and shipwright, the owner of Norna. Their relationship with surfing, sailing, and music, moved them to the tune of a two year Atlantic Circumnavigation. Kourtney soon realizes she is not the same person she was when she left home two years before.


Book Title: Accidental Sailor Girl by Kourtney Patterson (Paper Sailor Inc., May 27, 2014)

Price: $3.50/£2.50

Reviews: 34 for a total of 4.5 out of 5 stars (with almost 65% as 5-star)

Pages: 129


Analysis: The blurb was uninspiring and, I thought, bland. A look at reviews was more encouraging. Although most reviewers mentioned [cringe, cringe!] editorial fails, they also raved about the tone and enthusiasm of the young author. “The stories are wonderfully refreshing with a certain naive enthusiasm. Although not written in the style of a polished and seasoned writer her personality and charm carry the day.” I was still wavering, so I took a look at the “look inside” feature to check out the beginning of the story. Now, as the only non-sailor in a family of sailors, it might seem strange that I’d even be looking at this book. I could say that I sympathized with the young woman, 21 years old, alone and homeless, determined to find some way to avoid moving back to live with her father and his new wife. I could admit that (at least these beginning pages) pulled me in with their emotion, description, and obvious depth of feeling. But in fact, she had me with the subtitle: “A Story of Growing”, and quote from her partner, Pete Grundvig. “When I’m old, I’ll tell you a story, but now that I’m young, I must live one…” Sold!

Rosie Amber's Friday Five Challenge. Get yourself a cuppa and give yourself 5 minutes.

Rosie Amber’s Friday Five Challenge. Get yourself a cuppa and give yourself 5 minutes.

Here is Rosie’s Friday Five Challenge. It only took five minutes and a couple more to write up, and was a ton of fun. I hope you’ll consider joining in. All Rosie asks is that you link back to her original post here so we can all join in viewing your challenge results.

AUTHORS – You often only have seconds to get a reader to buy your book, is your book cover and book bio up to it?

My Friday Five Challenge is this….. IN ONLY FIVE MINUTES….

1) Go to any online book supplier,

2) Randomly choose a category,

3) Speed through the book covers, choose one which has instantly appealed to your eye,

4) Read the book Bio/ Description for this book, and any other details.

5) If there are reviews, check out a couple,

6) Make an instant decision, would you BUY or PASS?

I’ll be back next week with another Friday Five Challenge, do feel free to join in.