The Reluctant Mariner tells of an Australian couple’s five-year circumnavigation in a 12.2m. steel ketch, Onawa. The author, Joanna Hackett, was a self-proclaimed landlubber, and never imagined herself sailing of over the horizon in search of adventure, but having married someone who was keen to do just that, was willing to "give it a go". Her warts-and-all account, accompanied by a dry wit and an easy writing style made this book a sell-out when it first hit the shelves in 2001. While it is not a "how to" book, there are many useful hints here for the novice long-distance sailor, enough to make it essential reading for all those about to take off into the great unknown. At the same time, it is a fascinating read for the armchair traveler. The Hacketts visited more than 37 countries and these are brought to life with great descriptions, a little history, and some very funny anecdotes. From dodgy officials and the red tape waltz in Indonesia, a night in a Sri Lankan brothel and naked sailors in the Cyclades, to kangaroos in the Cape Verde Islands, snow skis and scrabble in the Spice Islands and suspect virgins in the Marquesas-there’s plenty to entertain the reader as the Hacketts make their way around the globe. Problems are solved, terrifying situations and bad weather are survived, and the ever-pragmatic Hackett manages to cope with everything the oceans can throw at her. If you want to know what it’s like to spend five years sailing around the world with your partner in a small yacht, and still remain friends, read this entertaining, amusing and interesting book. This eBook edition has been slightly amended from the original, and has several small additions.