Seafaring cat focus of storybook sequence

BROOKSVILLE – Most cats do not dream of sailing around the world. Neither does chowder. In the 1990s, however, the cat was somewhat reluctant to embark on a six-year journey with her caretakers, Captain Lee and her colleague Sheila. Their journey covered more than 45,000 miles including foreign lands and remote tropical islands.

In Sailing South ’til the Butter Melts, Brookville author LeCain W. Smith’s first trilogy of Chowder’s sea adventures, readers follow the cat’s journey from land to sea legs aboard a 43-foot sailboat that carries the also known author as Captain Lee. As it explores the Pacific coast of America to the Galapagos Islands, the cat adapts to life on the ocean, processing every experience and adapting to a variety of situations in the first two years. Her concern turns into a sense of curiosity and wonder as she transforms into a global navigator braving rolling seas, lightning, storms, sharks, wild jungle animals and pirates. But she also purrs with the joy of eating fresh fish, playing with birds, hearing parrots sing, watching dancing dolphins or bubbling whales and being with friendly people from many cultures.

From the perspective of a cat, Chowder gives an insight into life on board a cruise yacht.

According to Smith, the series of illustrated chapter books is intended for moderate and young adults, but is also suitable for sailors and any adult with a child’s heart.

“An educational and humorous book full of excitement, unexpected dangers, amazing encounters and joyful moments, ‘Sailing South’ to the Butter Melts’ is a unique adventure story based on real events,” says the author. “It is the first in a three-part series,” The Amazing Adventures of Manatee Soup, “in which the Chowder the sea cat presents her own point of view on all of her experiences.”

Smith was born in southern Maine and was called to the seaside at an early age. Over the years various sailing boats have taken him on many nautical adventures. On almost every trip he had a cat as a companion. Over time, his skills included teaching sailing and navigation, boat building, boat delivery, yacht surveying, harbor master and captain service on chartered boats from various ports including Bucks Harbor.

Over the years Smith has written several non-fiction books on nautical, historical, and health-related topics. One of the more recent was The Maritime History of Brooksville.

In the 1980s, Smith spent five years building a 43-foot ketch while living in Port Townsend, Washington. Then he went on a six-year journey around the world. Accompanied by his girlfriend Sheila and the trustworthy sea cat Chowder, they visited many remote islands and exotic parts of the world. Since that trip, LeCain had produced “Far Away,” a documentary video about the South Pacific leg of the trip. Now it’s Chowder’s turn to tell her own version of the World Odyssey in a trilogy of books, starting with “Sailing South ’til the Butter Melts”.

“Sailing South ’til the Butter Melts” is expected to appear in early June. The picture book published through Windrose Productions is sold at Blue Hill Books and the printed book and e-book can be ordered directly from the author at windroseaway.com. For information on the “Amazing Manatee Soup Adventures” and the two remaining stories, “Far Away Islands of Paradise” and “Westward Over the Horizon”, please visit the website. To contact the author directly, send an email [email protected]