Floating Island

( 1 )
Sending request ...


First published in 1990. Routledge is an imprint of Taylor & Francis, an informa company.

Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780710302922
  • Publisher: Taylor & Francis
  • Publication date: 8/28/1990
  • Series: Pacific Basin Books Series
  • Pages: 256
  • Product dimensions: 6.30 (w) x 9.30 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 1 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star


4 Star


3 Star


2 Star


1 Star


Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation


  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 20, 2007

    A reviewer

    Although Jules Verne is rightly credited with being the ¿father of science fiction,¿ he was also an astute and biting social commentator. But unlike his younger contemporary H.G. Wells, whose social novels, Tono-Bungay, Ann Veronica, Kips, ¿Mr. Polly, etc., are set apart from his science fiction, Verne wrote his social novels within the context of his celebrated Extraordinary Voyages. In his 1895 novel The Floating Island Verne utilized the premise that worked so well in his most popular works. In such thrillers as 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, Robur the Conqueror, and Master of the World, to name just a few, a marvelous craft is invented by a rich and eccentric misanthrope, who tries to force world leaders to end their destructive ways-or else. His ship is inadvertently boarded by outsiders who are immediately impressed by the ingenious captain and his marvelous craft, and the trouble begins. In The Floating Island a group of traveling French string musicians, who call themselves The Quartette Party, are on their way to San Diego to give a concert. Somehow they get lost in Southern California, but are rescued by a stranger named Calistus Munbar. They soon arrive in a place called Madeleine Bay and discover to their consternation that they've boarded an enormous vessel, believing they were still on land, on its way across the Pacific Ocean. Indignant at first, they agree to stay aboard for a year, entertain, and receive a handsome reward at tour¿s end. Constructed by a group of American millionaires who¿d formed a venture called The Floating Island Company, of Madeleine Bay, California, Floating Island is an iron vessel made of thousands of caissons and metal slabs, held together by millions of rivets. It is oval shaped, four-and-a-half miles long, three miles wide, with a circumference of about eleven miles. It is impervious to inclement weather or artillery barrage, but subject to piratical attacks and plunder. Little food is grown in its shallow deck soil, so most sustenance is imported. Communication with the mainland via telephone and telegraph. Powered by huge dynamos, it travels at a speed of eight knots an hour thus taking up to a year to circumnavigate the Pacific. Floating Island is a veritable industrial wonder and supreme achievement. Here all material cares are banished and most labor eliminated. The rich simply rest, cruise and sightsee. Verne takes the envious reader to Hawaii, the Marquesas, Tahiti, Tonga and several other archipelagoes. But this ¿the pearl of the Pacific¿ and its population, most of them living in its capitol, Milliard City, are a quarrelling lot divided by their loyalty to two rival leaders. One is named Jem Tankerdon, the other Nat Coverly, and their dislike for one another is intense. One favors making Floating Island an industrial enterprise, the other a rural environment. The two factions refer to themselves as either the Starboardites or the Larboardites. This mutual and volatile enmity naturally leads to the novel¿s spectacular climax. The Floating Island is obviously a Jules Verne satire of late 19th century American life our Gilded Age. Earlier in the century the Frenchman viewed this country as a great nation with the potential to do wonderful things for humanity. But by the 1890s, in Verne¿s view, it had become a nation populated by greedy industrialist whose extravagant lifestyles separated them from a vast underclass-the majority of the population. The friction between the Starboardites and the Larboardites recalls our Civil War conflict. And Verne prophesied that rampant industrialization would destroy society as we know it. ¿When a journey begins badly it rarely ends well,¿ Verne hints in the opening sentence of The Floating Island. As in most Verne novels the characters are a bit flat or comical, but the action is always sustained and his prophetic gifts amazing. Though somewhat lengthy, with several pointless and dragging scenes, this is nonetheless a vastly entert

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews

If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
Why is this product inappropriate?
Comments (optional)