Whew! Talk about cliff-hanger chapter endings! When 14-year-old Nathaniel Childe decides to search the South Atlantic for a legendary island where he feels convinced his ship-wrecked father is, the adventure never lets up. Nat, no goody-two-shoes, tricks his old friend Wayland into the voyage on Wayland's sloop Sea Cutter, but the trick puts Nat under the power of Snake, oily, clever, and treacherous. Snake stows away on Sea Cutter with plans of his own--plans that mean death. But Sea Cutter is not just a page-turner. It's loaded with humor, and it teaches two important lessons. First, it is possible to find joy even after the grief of losing someone you love. Second, trust is the basis for friendship.