As the story opens, the Robinson family are on board a ship bound for Australia. But as they reach the East Indies, they are hit by a violent storm that buffets and batters their ship. It's a terrifying experience for all concerned, especially for the children. But although William's heart sinks at the thought of the fate that may await him and his family, he remains strong, fortifying his family's resolve and praying that God may deliver them safely from this frightening ordeal.
The storm rages on for six days and nights. Each morning the passengers awake in the hope that the storm will subside, but it never lets up during its duration. On the seventh day, all hope is finally lost, and it's only a matter of time before the ship is completely destroyed.