The Sea Runners

The Sea Runners

Average Rating:
Rate this:
Baker & Taylor
In 1853, four Scandinavian indentured laborers in Russian Alaska steal a canoe and begin to paddle south toward the mouth of the Columbia River, twelve thousand miles away

Simon and Schuster
In 1853, in the farthest outpost of the Czar’s empire, four Scandinavian indentured servants—seven-year men no better off than slaves—resolve to escape from Russian Alaska. They steal an Indian canoe and point it south toward Astoria, in Oregon, twelve hundred miles away.

This novel of audacity is based on a historical incident discovered by the author, and transformed by his imagination into a sustained sweep of adventure. The four sea runners must weather the worst the ill-named Pacific can throw at them, and must weather their own fierce squalls, too, as day upon day, guided as much by instinct and determination as by map, they paddle through the magnificent maze of the Northwest Coast toward the mouth of the Columbia River.

Publisher: Atheneum, c1982
Edition: 1st ed.
ISBN: 9780689113024
Branch Call Number: DOI
Characteristics: 279 p. : ill. ; 22 cm.


From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment

Oct 01, 2018

The author explores a different landscape, era, occupation and plot line than his usual Montana/Northwest farm community experience. Set in the Russian controlled Sitka area, 4 very different men find themselves united in an attempt to escape indentured servitude. They steal a native canoe and head south toward Astoria by sea in a barely inhabited Pacific coast and inside passage.
I've enjoyed many of Doig's books but I was leary of such an abrupt change from his usual genre. Nice to say that I was not dissapointed by this one.

SnoIsleLib_JoanG Sep 23, 2017

Anyone who has navigated the waters of Southeast Alaska as I have, will understand why I can say that I felt, while reading this book, as though I was in the sea runners' boat every minute of their long journey! A fantastic read!

CRRL_VirginiaJ Jun 08, 2017

An adventure story and a character study. In 19th-century, Russian-owned Alaska, a party of men escape virtual slavery to try their luck on the open sea.

Jul 05, 2016

Doig really goes all out to write his prose poetically in this one. His turns of phrase, though sometimes hard to follow, are descriptive. Great story, I found it easy to put down and pick back up again.

May 01, 2015

I am about 2/3 through the book. Great read so far. Good yarn. Well researched..


Add Age Suitability

There are no ages for this title yet.


Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.


Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.


Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further

Browse by Call Number

Find it at OPL

To Top