C Walter Hodges's The Overland Launch (Halsgrove, 2 hrs, pounds 8.99) is a true story that will rivet anyone of any age. When a three-masted ship foundered off the north Devon coast at Porlock in 1899, the Lynmouth lifeboat was called out - but couldn't be launched in the teeth of the gale. Undeterred, the lifeboatmen harnessed the boat to 16 horses and hauled it over the moors, removing trees, walls and part of a cottage in order to get to Porlock. Reader Stewart Clapp has a west country brogue as rich as a tub of Devonshire cream.
Quite a different seaside is evoked by John Mortimer's Felix in the Underworld (Penguin, 3hrs, pounds 8.99). One minute writer Felix Morsom is wondering how to gain more press exposure in order to sell his novels, the next he has far too much - accused of fathering a love-child and suspected of murder.