Doldrums off Heron's Neck. The opening conversation between ten-year-old Marty and her widower dad establishes his need for a new fishing boat, her mistrust of hectoring Aunt Tilly. The first comes easily (as a reward for rescuing a capsized couple), the second takes longer to write off but the resolution is equally adventitious. Marty's dad is hospitalized for a bad sprain, Aunt Tilly can't (won't) take her because of a scheduled trip, and Marry is encouraged by new friend Jonathan Edward Cockran, twelve, to sail on the schooner Star of the Sea where he is serving as cabin boy; he'll fix it up with the Captain, he says, and he does--because he's the son of the multimillionaire owner. Happens also that Aunt Tiny is one of the passengers, that J. E. Cockran puts her down with aplomb, that he enlists his solid gold father to finish her off. The cruise news pokes fun at the pay-to-work passengers; the rest is bilge perfumed but not purged by Dad's final stand for independence.