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Four Mums in a Boat by Janette Benaddi, Helen Butters, Niki Doeg, Frances Davies

Four Mums in a Boat

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Ordinary women doing the extraordinary. This book is testament to following your dreams and that you can do anything you put your mind too if you work hard enough.

Four middle aged friends who met at a local Saturday morning rowing club decide to take on The Talisker Whiskey Challenge – also known as ‘The World's Toughest Row’ - across 3,000 miles of treacherous ocean. All four are mothers, wives and professional women but athletes? No, not athletes, yet they had a dream to follow and follow it they did.

This is a story of determination, of pushing past the overwhelming feeling of failing, letting everyone down and of course of silencing the doubters, the people who say ‘You can’t do this’. This is an incredible story about an amazing experience by four amazing women. There were moments that sent shivers down my spine as I followed their journey from the very beginning when even getting to the start line was a massive undertaking. The story is told by all four women, all four friends and it feels like that too. Their warmth and love for each other shines through as they share ever moment, every fear, every failure and ultimately their success. By the end I felt so proud of the achievement and so emotionally engaged with these four ordinary mums who just happened to row an ocean. ~ Shelley Fallows

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Four Mums in a Boat by Janette Benaddi, Helen Butters, Niki Doeg, Frances Davies

Janette, Frances, Helen and Niki, though all from Yorkshire, were four very different women, all juggling full time jobs alongside being mothers to each of their 2 children. They could never be described as athletes, but they were determined to be busy and the local Saturday morning rowing club was the perfect place to go to have a laugh and a gossip, get the blood pumping in the open air, and feel invigorated. Brought together by their love of rowing, they quickly became firm friends, and it wasn't long before they cooked up a crazy idea over a few glasses of wine: together, they were going to do something that fewer people than had gone into space or climbed Everest had succeeded in doing. They were going to cross 3,000 miles of treacherous ocean in the toughest row in the world, The Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge. Yes, they had children and husbands that they would be leaving behind for two months, yes they had businesses to run, mortgages to pay, responsibilities. And there was that little thing of them all being in their 40s and 50s. But two years of planning, preparation, fundraising, training and difficult conversations later, and they found themselves standing on the edge of the San Sebastian harbour in the Canary Islands, petrified, exhilarated and ready to head up the race of their lives. This is the story of how four friends together had the audacity to go on a wild, terrifying and beautiful adventure, not to escape life, but for life not to escape them.

About the Author

A group of four working mums from Yorkshire made history and achieved their dreams, by crossing the Atlantic in 67 days and picking up a world record: the oldest women to row any ocean, all to raise money for charity and inspire others. The rowers:

Janette Benaddi is a 52-year-old business woman from Leeds. She is married with two children and lives in North Yorkshire.

Helen Butters is an NHS Communications expert from Cawood, in North Yorkshire. She is 46 years old, married with two children and lives in North Yorkshire.

Frances Davies is a solicitor in Leeds and runs her own law firm. She is 48 years old, married with two sons and lives in York.

Niki Doeg is a business owner and qualified rugby coach. She is 46 years old and lives in York with her husband and their two sons.

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Book Info

Publication date

9th March 2017


Janette Benaddi, Helen Butters, Niki Doeg, Frances Davies

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HQ an imprint of Harlequin (UK)


384 pages


Biography / Autobiography
Books of the Month
Summer Reading
The Real World
eBook Favourites

True stories of heroism, endurance & survival



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