In telling his story, London Goes to Sea, Peter Baumgartner speaks for many sailors. There is no major drama — no sinkings, world-circling voyages, or perfect storms. Nevertheless there is minor drama aplenty (just ask Peter how dramatic it felt at the time) as the boat goes adrift or is grounded or the engine fails.

Yet without drama and hype, Peter has accomplished what only a small fraction of sailors take on: he has brought an older, neglected sailboat back from an eventual death. Peter invested mechanical talent and elbow grease. His reward was an affordable, beautiful, and fully functional cruising sailboat. His achievements and those of others should be celebrated.

It is in recording and celebrating this accomplishment that Peter speaks for other sailors. They considered their achievements to be inconsequential. Peter celebrated his by writing a book about his boat and her restoration. And once she was floating, Peter celebrated the pleasure which comes from living simply while cruising in a sailboat. He enjoys leaving land-based stresses behind and reminds others of the reasons for investing time and talent in an older boat. In doing so, he encourages those who would do likewise to find and fix a fixer-upper sailboat.

Because he writes beautifully, shares his personal insights, and is so remarkably self-aware, Peter Baumgartner takes his readers with him on a voyage of boat ownership and the fulfillment of a dream. It is a tale well told.

London Goes to Sea by Peter Baumgartner, (Sheridan House, 204; 224 pages)