4 out of 4 stars
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In Adrift Charlie Sheldon is at the top of his craft. This is a fascinating story woven from events in a container boat, a tugboat, a family and the community. One day in December, the fire alarm wakes Steve, the ship's captain. The Seattle Express is on fire. After he and his crew struggle to put out the fire they find they must abandon ship. With nine in one lifeboat and eleven in the other, they are adrift in cold stormy seas.
Larry and Louise are at the helm of a salvage tug. They muster a rag-tag group to haul the Express back to port. They need this claim to survive financially. Myra worries about her Dad in the lifeboat. Some of her coworkers don't seem to care. They are more involved in the dispute between their tribe and big business. The big business that wants to mine in their community also owns the ship.
The author has taken each scene and recreated it for the reader to experience the situation. As the fire burns in the ship, you can smell the smoke and feel the ship careen in the choppy sea. He makes you understand the tension of the captain, the tone of the crew as they struggle with the fire, and the difficulty in making the decision to abandon ship. That's just the first chapter.
Adrift is gripping. Charlie Sheldon is a master story-teller. From the first page to the last, it was difficult to put this book down. By taking each character one at a time in their particular situation, the author weaves an exciting, interesting story of the life of mariners, their families, and the town. His way of telling this story, his attention to detail is fantastic. I could literally smell the ocean, see the snow, and shiver in the cold with the characters. He made me feel the desperation and determination of the crew of the Seattle Express, the crew of the tug Warhorse, and the family waiting for news.
In summary, I give this book 4 out of 4 stars. There was nothing about this book I didn't like. People who would enjoy this book would be readers who like action-packed books that move along at a good pace. Also, this book does not have any offensive language, explicit scenes, or violence. Any errors did not impede the flow of the book; it was well edited. There are some words landlubbers like me need to understand, but that does not slow down the action either. It could be a book a club would like to dissect. It could just as easily be a great movie.
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