Author(s): Amber Dermont
Jason Prosper grew up in the elite world of Manhattan penthouses, Maine summer estates, old boy prep schools and exclusive sailing clubs. A smart, athletic teenager, Jason maintains a healthy, humorous disdain for the trappings of affluence, preferring to spend afternoons sailing with Cal, his best friend and boarding school roommate. When Cal commits suicide during this junior year at Kensington Prep, Jason is devastated by the loss and transfers to Bellingham Academy. There, he meets Aidan, a fellow student with her own troubled past. They embark on a tender, awkward, deeply emotional relationship. When a major hurricane hits the New England coast, the destruction it causes brings with it another upheaval in Jason's life, forcing him to make sense of a terrible secret that has been buried by the boys he considers his friends.
A stylish debut set in the elite world of Manhattan penthouses, Maine summer estates, old boy prep schools and exclusive sailing clubs. Perfect for readers who adore American fiction in the vein of The Secret History by Donna Tartt and The Privileges by Jonathan Dee.
The Starboard Sea is a touching, beautiful and deeply wise novel, a hymn to the bittersweet glories of youth. You will be enthralled. -- Justin Cronin Author Of The Passage Dermont is a confident stylist, musical and alliterative. Independent on Sunday Dermont measures out the stories behind Jason's twin tragedies coolly, without altering the pace of her well-crafted narrative. Financial Times Utterly convincing. Daily Mail Writing that will give you goosebumps...written in sparse yet evocative language...Aidan and Jason's tragic stories will stay with you. Psychologies Magazine With unflinching wit, Amber Dermont examines the harsh vicissitudes of life, and though the worlds she creates are often unsettling places, her sense of detail always makes for a pleasurable read. There is a vibrant lucidity to her language, a daring music...Her characters are simultaneously able to articulate their pain, pass judgment on their own behavior and pardon themselves for their transgressions. Marilynne Robinson, Pulitzer Prize and Orange Prize winning author of Gilead and Home ...engrossing...captivating and inspired. Jason is a fiercely likeable first-person narrator and romantic hero. The steady, restrained unmasking of Jason's history...is one of the novel's many achievements...Dermont adeptly charts the fine calibrations of teenage love and shame and belonging. The New York Times Dermont draws the tony campus life in "The Starboard Sea" with an insider's hand... Jason has been compared to Nick Carraway for his sober narration and keen sensitivity to the decadence of his peers, and in more than a few instances "The Starboard Sea" feels like a distant cousin of "The Great Gatsby. The Washington Post Vividly written. Dermont shows real spark in her sensual descriptions of sailing and her realistic depiction of the malevolent dynamics among sophisticated teens... Booklist
Amber Dermont has published her short stories in numerous literary magazines and anthologies. She currently serves as an Associate Professor of English and Creative Writing at Agnes Scott College in Decatur, Georgia.