Over the last six months, the cruise industry has been forcibly transformed into a dormant skeleton of its former glory. Ships bob empty in ports, millions have had to cancel their holidays, and crew members attempt to find work on land with no end date in sight.

As a former cruise ship entertainment host, Sam Catling can sympathise. It’s a period in his life that was unforgettable, uplifting and frustrating as heck. In his new memoir, ‘Seems Like Smooth Sailing’, Catling tells all.


This is a coming of age, just flown the nest, tell all comedy memoir about the ups and downs of working on-board a cruise ship as an entertainer.

If you have doubts about going on a cruise, then this book might encourage you.

If you have ambitions to go and work on a cruise, then this book won’t dissuade you…probably.

“I wanted to give people a behind-the-porthole look at cruising life, from the perspective of those who calls the ships home,” explains the author. “For those who can’t physically cruise right now, my book provides the perfect escape to learn about what happens behind the closed doors of the ships they love so dearly. It’s a wild industry and I’m so glad I had a chance to experience it!”

Continuing, “Nobody knows what the industry is going to do, and where things might go. At the same time, it’s vital we preserve the integrity of cruising. Sharing stores is one way we can do just that. And, when the time comes to step aboard again, you’ll know more than you ever thought you could!”

Readers love the book, leaving positive reviews. Stefan Ruiz comments, “Very genuine story with great moments of embarrassing humour that I could really relate to. I felt like I was taken on a journey and it was very interesting to find out what happens behind the scenes on a cruise ship. I highly recommend!”

George Akerman adds, “Very funny book , made me chuckle quite a few times, Easy good read and fun to get an insight of his adventure on a cruise ship. Definitively recommend!”

‘Seems Like Smooth Sailing’ is available now:

Amazon – https://amzn.to/32r8eJq

Publisher – https://bit.ly/3fF7KTP

Author’s official website – https://www.slssbook.com/.


About the Author 

Sam Catling was born in London, England, and grew up in the small town in rural Essex, known as South Woodham Ferrer
Displaying an interest in the performing arts from an early age, Sam later went on to study drama, music tech, English literature and film at college.

Feeling somewhat victim to the middle child syndrome (his words not mine), Sam took a chance at working as an entertainer on-board cruise ships to get away from it all.

It was never something he even considered an option growing up, but as soon as the idea became viable after completing college, Sam went about the application process following some sound advice from his Nan.

After spending four years at sea, and many years of trying to re adapt to the pace of life back on land, Sam finally found the courage and motivation to write his first book whilst studying for a BA in music business at Middlesex University. Sam has been a hobbyist writer for some time, but never tried to write a book before. His passion for writing comes from a desire to entertain, and since starting to take his writing more seriously, has already begun work on multiple other projects. 

In his youth Sam co-wrote a comedy script with a friend, which they had written for a show already in existence and sent into the BBC. In response they received a hand written letter from comic actor Paul Whitehouse, applauding and encouraging the efforts of the script and to keep up the good work.Sam recalls this to be one of his earliest recognition’s of praise he ever got as a writer, and he attributes that encouragement as one of the driving forces that spurred him on through the years.

These days Sam splits his time between working as a freelance handyman for hire around London, and as a background supporting artiste for TV and Film. His weekly routine as he puts it, consists of mainly mounting TV’s, building IKEA products, and portraying dead people, or people about to be killed in various different settings and time periods.

His biggest and most recent achievements include completing two double sliding glass door wardrobes from IKEA, and playing an alien of some kind in the opening battle scene from ‚Star Wars – Rise of Skywalker’ (where amongst the madness he claims he was shot and killed by a Storm trooper)

Whilst these achievements in the eyes of many could be considered feats of astonishment, Sam has refused to rest on his laurels and said that he is keen on setting his sights ever so slightly higher.

Catling adds “it’s an important time to reflect on this huge industry, in particular some of its detriments. The last few months have proven how germ-ridden cruise ships  can be, but I also want to call attention to the massive damage they do to the environment and sea/ocean ecosystems.

For example one of my favourite places I was fortunate enough to visit was the Seychelles back in 2008, and since then the coral reefs have been dying at an alarming rate. It’s a place I’ve always wanted to go back to and it would be devastating to return to anything less than paradise.

The industry must evolve to electric vessels as well as those utilising ship-to-shore power. Hurtigruten are making headway with the MS Roald Amundsen, the world’s first hybrid electric–powered expedition ship, but a lot more needs to be done in terms of industry-wide adoption. Read my book, make your own conclusions, and let’s lobby for reform beyond hand sanitizer and face masks.”