The Family Ship by Sonja Yoerg
Publication: February 23, 2021
Genre: Contemporary Fiction
Chesapeake Bay, 1980. Eighteen-year-old Verity Vergennes is the captain of the USS Nepenthe, and her seven younger siblings are her crew. The ship—an oyster boat transformed into a make-believe destroyer—is the heart of the Vergennes family, a place both to play and to learn responsibility. But Verity’s had it with being tied to the ship and secretly applies to a distant college. If only her parents could bear to let her go.
Maeve and Arthur Vergennes already suffered one loss when, five years earlier, their eldest son, Jude, stormed out and never returned. Now Maeve is pregnant again and something’s amiss. Verity yearns to follow her dreams, but how can she jump ship now? The problem, and perhaps the answer, lies with Jude.
When disaster strikes and the family unravels, Verity must rally her sibling crew to keep the Nepenthe and all it symbolizes afloat. Sailing away from home, she discovers, is never easy—not if you ever hope to find your way back.
My Thoughts… Writing a review for The Family Ship is not going to be easy. I loved the book so much that I want to share everything, but I do not want to include any spoilers.
A family with 9 siblings lives in a house with a ship in their backyard. It has become the children’s playground, their safe place, their place to escape to. Each child has their own title and job to do during their adventures on the ship and they work together just as a crew would.
Their parents have given them love, support, and toughness while requiring them all to participate in the family and the day-to-day life of keeping a house and family going. Arthur, the father, is a Korean War Vet who runs his household like a drill sergeant. The mother, Maeve, tends to be more loving and a buffer between Arthur and the kids.
Verity and Jude, the oldest children, are forced to take on more responsibilities when their mother becomes sick, they step up to run the house and take care of their siblings. As the burdens continue to come to the family things get extremely tough and Verity and Jude do all they can to keep things as much the same as possible. All the children show their strength and unselfishness as their world spirals out of their control.
The Family Ship is a developing story. With each chapter, I learned more about the characters, their history, and what their futures would hold. It is a story of a family coming together and being there for each other.
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Meet Sonja Yoerg… I grew up in Stowe, Vermont, the daughter of a ski instructor and a history teacher. In my first incarnation, I was a animal behaviorist who studied learning in blue jays, hyenas and kangaroo rats. I wrote a book about that. Now I make stuff up.
I've published several novels, including TRUE PLACES, a Washington Post and Amazon Charts bestseller. Yeah, typing that makes me smile because reaching readers is the point, right? My upcoming release, THE FAMILY SHIP, earned a starred review from Publishers Weekly. Watch for it on February 23, 2021.
When I'm not writing or pretending to be writing, I run, garden, cook, eat, drink wine, then run some more. My husband and I live in central Virginia with a view of the Blue Ridge Mountains. It's quiet and pretty, like Vermont.
Join me all over the place: