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Deck Boy is a full-blooded and comical adventure story for readers of all ages. It is set in the mid 1970s, the last great days of the British merchant fleet when ships were beautiful, the dock basins were crowded, navigation was by the stars, and the thronging crews were very different from the crowd you met in the high street.
When Ben Thomson, nearly fifteen, plays truant from his expensive boarding school, he has no idea that he will never return. All he intends is to visit his old home in Westport, but a chance encounter in a steamy workmen’s café on the Dock Road turns his life on its head. Before he knows it, Ben finds himself escaping through a window, assaulted in an illegal drinking den, threatened by a murderer, changing his name and his appearance, forging documents, getting tattooed, making a host of new friends – and enemies – and outward bound on a voyage to the far side of the world. Surrounded by a crew of loyal, eccentric, gay and violent shipmates, Ben needs all his wits and courage to keep one step ahead of the law and something infinitely more dangerous.
In the space of a few months, Ben develops from a lonely, self-conscious schoolboy into a resourceful young man making decisions that may result in life or death.
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