This is a story of modern Portugal, where the people are no longer brave explorers, but still earn an honest living from the sea, though they are having to go farther away to get their fish. Manoel knew no other place than his village -- so the visit to kinsfolk in Lisbon brought strange adventures, while his father went to the Banks with the fleet. Manoel -- and his mischief making dog, Gama, earned money on their own to help rebuild the shattered fishing boat back home. There isn't very much suspense, nor much real plot, but there is the feel of Portugal in the background. A beautiful book, but almost too artistic for the average child, with the buff tinted pages and the pictures in soft browns by Theresa Kalab.