More Than You Think You Know, a women’s road (river) trip novel by Cyndi Perkins, has been released by Beating Windward Press. The story of ships and friendships, set in fall 2006, follows Hailey, Robin and Trish, three women piloting the 44-foot luxury trawler Blackout through the Heartland Rivers from Chicago to the Gulf of Mexico.
With her children grown and gone, Hailey can no longer stomach living with her abusive husband. In the midst of both a boating trip and menopausal angst, she steals a sailboat and ventures solo across Lake Michigan. In a Chicago harbor, she meets Robin, the chain-smoking divorcee, Captain of Blackout. When the Coast Guard broadcasts a radio alert for the stolen sailboat, Robin insists Hailey seek asylum and travel downriver with her. In Joliet, they take on Trish, a Las Vegas gold-digger who deserts her Sugar Daddy’s yacht to join the crew and get out of Illinois.
The women navigate the 1,300-mile-long series of rivers and locks through the Heartland Rivers from Chicago to the Gulf of Mexico, keeping weary eyes out for barges and Hailey’s husband. With no sense of destination beyond Mobile Bay, they are on not one journey, but two: America’s Great Loop and the search for their own place to be safe, to be happy, to be themselves.
A Houghton-based writer and editor, Perkins first refined and delivered her successful query for her debut novel at the 2015 Upper Peninsula Publishers and Authors (UPPAA) conference in Marquette, in a session on elevator pitches.
“I’m really grateful for all the support and sound advice I continue to receive from my fellow authors,” Perkins says. “They’ve been with me through the editing, query, and revision process, and are now helping me figure the ins-and-outs of marketing and selling the book.” This summer, Perkins teamed up with fellow UPPAA members Corey M. LaBissoniere and Deborah K. Frontiera, along Keweenaw author Kristin Neva, to bring shoppers at Eagle Harbor and Copper Harbor art shows a selection of books that spans genres. “It was a great way to showcase regional authors, and we plan to do the same at the 2017 Keweenaw Art Affair on November 11 in Houghton,” says Perkins. “They’ve all got at least two books out—Debbie many more than that. I’ve got some catching up to do!”
Perkins will present her first book talk at Michigan Tech’s Van Pelt and Opie Library from 4-6 p.m. Thursday, October 19.
The award-winning journalist writes and edits for Michigan Technological University digital and print publications. For 10 years, she worked at the Houghton, Michigan Daily Mining Gazette as a reporter and editor, and wrote the popular “Line of Sight” column. Her nautical writing credits include Cruising World, Latitudes & Attitudes, Good Old Boat, PassageMaker, Southwinds, and Northern Breezes magazines.
Reach her at cyndiperkins.com and connect on social media @cyndiperkins.
Contact Matt Peters to obtain high-resolution cover/author images, or for more information. MattP@BeatingWindward.com