On two remote islands off the coast of Maine, the local lobstermen have fought savagely for generations over the fishing rights to the ocean waters between them. Young Ruth Thomas is born into this feud, the daughter of one of the greediest lobstermen in Maine. Eighteen years old, as smart as a whip, and irredeemably unromantic, Ruth returns home from boarding school determined to throw her education overboard and join the 'stern-men'. As the feud escalates, she helps work the lobster boats, brushes up on her profanity, and eventually falls for a handsome young lobsterman. A funny, sparkling novel of unlikely friendships and family ties, Stern Men captures a feisty American spirit through this unforgettable heroine who is destined for greatness despite herself. Stern Men was a New York Times Notable Book.