Author, Susea Spray shares her love of language and sea with young and old, through the eyes of a big blue boat and a young girl.

A retired classroom teacher and professional photographer, author Susea Spray now lives the life of a cruising sailor.

She and her husband don’t have a brick-and-mortar house. Instead, their home is a traditional big, blue sailing boat.

After four years of preparation, they departed Adelaide, South Australia in 2013. In the boat, they have sailed three oceans, seen amazing animals, and visited incredible places.

The Big Blue Boat now lives in Europe. Northern hemisphere summers find Susea and her husband on board, continuing their journey through the rivers and canals of Europe. The sailing journey has been the inspiration for Susea to at last find her writing voice for children.

During the time of Covid and its restrictions, unable to sail, Susea was at last able to put pen to paper and the rhythmic A Big Blue Boat series was born!

An avid reader who has always written in one form or another, Susea is now sharing her love of language and sea with young and old, through the eyes of a big blue boat and a young girl, the Captain. Her first book, A Big Blue Boat, is a cumulative tale introducing the boat and her captain. It was a 2022 Literary Titan Silver Award winner, and a 2022 and 2021 finalist in the Page Turner Awards.

Susea’s first sequel was Shortlisted in the 2022 Page Turner Awards and won the ‘Best Genre’ Award for the children’s picture book category. Lesley has come on board for the sailing journey once more and Susea is eagerly awaiting the time she receives a photo of the first illustration.

In her spare time, Susea also loves to research, cook, photograph, quilt, embroider, walk and work on her sailing blog.

The Illustrator: LESLEY CYBULKA

About the illustrator, Lesley Cybulka

Lesley studied at SA School of Art and decided to go with Graphic Design. She worked in an advertising agency. Now Lesley paints for her own fun.

A Big Blue Boat Illustrations

The Books

A Big Blue Boat Narration