In its ability to weave sailing into a coming-of-age story, The Starboard Sea is a success. For Dermont, the ocean is at once mutable and uncontrolled, a space that can at times be subdued by specialized knowledge, but more often gives way to confusion. And in this sense, Dermont's sea becomes a metaphor for adolescence. Yet, for all the vibrant descriptions of boarding school life, her sailing scenes often seem mechanical, as if they had been written to pack each page with as many salty terms as possible. And in some cases, a lack of accuracy leads to confusion. For instance, in a description of light-wind dinghy racing the protagonist explains, "When the winds were fluky, we knew when to ease the sails and douse the jib." (p. 266) Why one would douse a jib in a shifting breeze is not explained. Elsewhere, Prosper explains that his was "one of the rare teams to play the squalls, using the rough winds to make a charge for victory." (p. 61) Again, this description seems more appropriate to offshore racing than any high school dinghy regatta. These few fumbled details, however, are far outweighed by Dermont's gift for character development and pacing. And it is evident that she has thought deeply about the relationship between racing sailors and the sea. Ultimately, The Starboard Sea is an entertaining read, one that warrants a place on the dinghy sailor's bookshelf.