4 out of 4 stars
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Adrift is the second book from Strong Heart Series written by Charlie Sheldon and it falls under the category of Other Fiction.
The cargo ship Seattle Express was sailing in the North Pacific when a fire erupted aboard at four in the morning. After some time of trying to extinguish the fire, the Captain of the ship, Steve Procida, decided it would be too dangerous for him and his crew to stay onboard and give the order for everyone to go to the lifeboats. They split into two teams, and they all manage to get away from the ship, drifting for a long time in the worst December weather, with strong winds and high seas, and without a heating source. The story continues relating the events from inside the lifeboats and also introducing new characters: the owners of a tugboat and their crew who set out for the Express.
To be honest, in the first part of the story I was a bit disappointed; even though many things happened, I didn’t get to feel what the characters were feeling, but in exchange, I got many pieces of information about ships that I didn’t really need to know. I know that this might be subjective and that some people enjoyed those parts just as much, especially those who worked on a ship, but it would have been nice for me and easier to get into the story. Leaving this aside, the book is well structured, you know who the main character from a chapter is, and if necessary, you can easily go back for information. Each chapter is written from the perspective of one of the characters in the first or third person.
There was one thing that the author left unexplained: some suspicions raised by Travis, one of the crew members from the tugboat, about a few containers that were found aboard the ship. He wanted to look into that, and I was under the impression that he would solve this mystery, but he didn’t do anything in the end. Maybe there is a third book coming out, that would explain this?
It was nice to read about the families and friends of the sailors and see what they were feeling and doing while their loved ones were still to be found. Also, I enjoyed some of the characters for their strength and wisdom, the author managed to blend many personalities quite well, and he described the relationship between the sailors really nice and realistically.
As I got to the second half of the book, and especially towards the end, I got my feelings. Remember I wasn’t quite satisfied from this point of view in the first part of the book? Oh, I got them! And unexpectedly strong, too. And I also understood why it was chosen the Book Of The Month.
I thought about this for a while, if I should give it 3 or 4 stars, three seem to be unjust and four a bit too much. But, in the end, I decided to give it 4 out of 4 stars. It is well written and edited, full of action and realistic characters. Even with its flaws, it’s still a book that most people of all ages will enjoy and most likely will recommend to others.
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