Flotsam and Jetsam: The Collected Adventures, Opinions, and Wisdom from a Life Spent Messing About in Boats

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Overview

Robb White was a master of the art of spinning a good yarn. He was an old salt, dispensing copious wisdom and entertainment in a voice that is part Florida cracker, part biology professor. Readers got a taste of his stories in How to Build a Tin Canoe, but that volume barely scratched the surface of his total output. Flotsam and Jetsam includes all those stories, plus about five times more.

His stories revolve around boats and boatbuilding, with countless sidetracks into such ...

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Flotsam and Jetsam: The Collected Adventures, Opinions, and Wisdom from a Life Spent Messing About in Boats

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Overview

Robb White was a master of the art of spinning a good yarn. He was an old salt, dispensing copious wisdom and entertainment in a voice that is part Florida cracker, part biology professor. Readers got a taste of his stories in How to Build a Tin Canoe, but that volume barely scratched the surface of his total output. Flotsam and Jetsam includes all those stories, plus about five times more.

His stories revolve around boats and boatbuilding, with countless sidetracks into such esoterica as clam chowder, sawmills, cast-netting, and alligators. His style is similar to his sister Bailey White’s—mining a deep vein of Southern eccentricity and charm, while also imparting a great deal of practical and technical wisdom.

As Peter Spectre wrote about him: “At first blush his style seemed to be pure memory dump, but if you stuck with it over the long haul, you would discover that each piece was part of a long, loose tale about what life used to be and still could be without SUVs, personal watercraft, Blackberries, plywood, fast food, and any amount of other useless stuff bought off the shelf. The cumulative, compelling effect was to cause one to examine critically one’s life in light of what he wrote about his. A story by Robb White was beautifully constructed.”

A must-read for any boat-nut, and for anyone who values the old ways of doing it yourself.

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Editorial Reviews

Michael Edelman
"One of the great story tellers, boat builders, and naturalists of the modern era. "
W.R. Cheney
“Sailor, boatbuilder, fisherman, hunter, marine biologist, tugboat deck hand, humorist, philosopher – Robb White was all of these things and more. In “Flotsam and Jetsam” he gives us a collection of essays reflecting the variety and depth of his experience. [He has] a graceful, unaffected style, which incidentally should be a lesson to us all about the virtues of simplicity and directness."
Rob Rohde-Szudy
“The writing of Robb White is an acquired taste. It’s like good whiskey – if you can get past the hard kick, there’s surprising smoothness and subtlety. … Imagine my joy when Robb’s widow, Jane White, took the time to distill Flotsam and Jetsam. This volume is less like a bottle of whiskey and more like a big jug.”
Chas. Hague
“White’s essays into boats, outboard motors, weather, island living, anchoring, the ecology of the Florida Bend country, children, fish, ducks, and hurricanes are both entertaining and educational. . . . Read this one."
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781891369834
  • Publisher: Breakaway Books
  • Publication date: 6/1/2009
  • Pages: 568
  • Sales rank: 255,994
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 1.50 (d)

Meet the Author


Robb White was a respected boatbuilder, and a frequent contributor to such publications as 'WoodenBoat' and 'Messing About in Boats.' He was the author of "How to Build a Tin Canoe." He passed away in May 2006. Bailey White is the author of "Mama Makes Up Her Mind," "Sleeping at the Starlite Motel," "Quite a Year for Plums," and other books.
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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Posted January 16, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    Robb White¿s essays delve into a wide range of subject matte

    Robb White’s essays delve into a wide range of subject matter, seasoned with a humorous and philosophical take on life in general. A great many of his stories, (some slightly irreverent), are laugh-out-loud funny. Some are educational and some are poignant. We see a love of the outdoors and ecology that is far from pretentious.

    Here is a man who loved a good boat and all the joy that came with it. Robb White was a man of both intellect and practicality, a rare combination. If you enjoy a good yarn, or have any interest in the old ways of the Gulf Coast, read this book. Besides, where else will you find a man pondering life lessons from blue crabs?

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