But now, that's the least of his problems.
The United States come under attack, and Jim's parents go missing. Drug runners and modern-day pirates are coming to settle a score. All he and his sister have now are an old boat, limited supplies, and each other. Jim must race against time if he wants to escape the catastrophic meltdown of civilization.
|Publisher:||Northern & 71st an imprint of Telemachus Press|
|Product dimensions:||5.50(w) x 8.25(h) x 0.94(d)|
About the Author
Dan Haight is a full-time geek and has been for a very long time. A native of the San Francisco Bay Area, he first fell in love with science-fiction watching Star Wars and Star Trek before moving onto the other classics of the genre. He cites his major creative influences from a broad range of authors and genres, including Ray Bradbury, Elmore Leonard, Hunter S Thompson and Chuck Palahniuk.
His first short stories were published in 2007 on different fiction sites like indieink.org and hackwriters.org. “I loved the fact that people connected with me,” Dan relates, “but I wanted to do the big one – I wanted to publish a novel.” He continued working with a project that started out as an idle daydream back in 2007 to turn it into the novel “Flotilla” in 2011.
“Flotilla’s a personal project for me,” he adds. “I didn’t know what seasteading or mariculture were when I started. I just started thinking about people who lived on the ocean and then I started wondering how they would get along … you know, practical solutions to weird problems. Eventually, my research led me to seasteading and mariculture and I’m glad that my novel has such a strong basis in reality. Flotilla is about a place that could really work in the near future.”
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
I received a complimentary copy of this book from the author through Netgalley in return for an honest review. This is an intriguing young adult coming of age, post-apocalyptic novel. I really enjoyed it. Jim Westfield is a wonderful character. I really liked him and admired him as he dealt with situations that most adults would struggle with. I love his character growth. He has an alcohol addiction and in a bid to avoid going into rehab, he chooses to live with his father on a man-made island of boats, farming fish in the Pacific for the summer. I started this story and struggled to get into it at first. The story is told through the eyes of Jim, who has some serious issues going on around him. He is only fourteen when he decides to live with his father, who lives on a fish farm in the ocean, after a serious drinking session sees him facing time in a rehabilitation centre for alcohol poisoning. Not having had the same issues as Jim, I struggled to relate to him though I could empathize with him. What I love about his story is the way he starts to see what a waste his life has been up until that point. His father, Rick, doesn't coddle him and expects him to work (it is a business after all). I think that it may be a bit harsh for a fourteen year old to be expected to do the work of a man. However, this appears to be exactly what Jim needed. He flourishes on the Horner C and makes some friends along the way. I loved meeting Miguel. He is the owner of "The Range", a rifle range within the colony, which the various characters use as a club and meeting place. He is a no-nonsense character who takes Jim under his wing and treats him like a son. I also loved Riley, Jim's rather gassy friend. Their antics made me laugh. Then there a menagerie of other characters that live within the colony that gives the island an eclectic feel. Some of them are down right weird though the majority are only looking to make a living but, just like any town, they bring their own personalities to the community. Once I got into the story, I didn't put it down until I'd finished it. Watching someone like Jim mature before my eyes had me feeling as proud as if he was one of my family. There are a few surprising twists that I didn't see coming and a few scenes that had me giggling (most of those containing Riley). The danger, both on shore from the terrorists and the colony from pirates, kept me sitting on the edge of my seat. I reached the end of the book feeling a little emotionally wrung out from it all. I found myself on a roller coaster ride of emotion and, even though I am still feeling a little angry and disappointed at Jim's father, I am looking forward to reading the next book as soon as I can. Daniel Haight has written a wonderful coming of age tale. There are elements of hard science fiction and dystopian parts, which will appeal to readers of all ages. I love his fast paced writing style that brought the characters and situations to life. The flow felt a little choppy in the beginning but as the story went on, it got better. I would definitely consider reading more of his books in the future. I highly recommend this book to young readers aged 15 upwards and to adults who love reading YA coming of age or dystopian novels. - Lynn Worton
This was an excellent coming-of-age novel written in a first person perspective. It is an enjoyable book about a near-future collapse but that doesn't come until about 3/4 into the book. Prior to that is character building mixed with "growing up" and building context. The grammatical mistakes mentioned by other reviewers are indeed there, but I did not find them to be as frequent or annoying as others would have me believe. All in all, I enjoyed the book but did wish there was a bit more written into the plot about why the other characters were "weird" other than the nararator saying so.
Flotilla by Dan Haight was a delight to read. This is a coming of age story like nothing you've ever read or seen. Jim is thrown into a world where he does not know friend from enemy, has to grow up and make hard decisions or risk death. The characters in Flotilla are colorful, and just plane ¿weird¿ ¿but in a good way. The internal struggles that Jim faces feel genuine and in the end this helps greatly in making his story feel real. There are a few hilarious moments in the book, however it's a guy thing. I think guys will enjoy reading this book much more than girls will, which is an excellent accomplishment. This book is ideal for tweens and teens, but I would not recommend young children read it, as there are some mature topics covered in the book. The only other critique that I had about this book, is that the first half was exceptionally well written, but after that it got sloppy. Words repeating, or not there at all, and grammar issues littered the pages. This often times caused me to stop and having to evaluate what the author was trying to convey. This really interrupted the flow of the story and I found it distracting having to guess what was supposed to go there. Other than that, I enjoyed the book, and can't wait to read the next one... if there is one... oh please let there be one...
There are many things to recommend this book: well developed characters and a first person narration by the main character, Jim. Jim is 14, going on 15 and like most teens has his moments of childish behavior and recalcitrant attitude when he feels someone is treating him like a child. In an attempt to ‘realign’ his priorities after a stay in rehab for alcohol, his mother seeks out his deadbeat and otherwise troubled father, Rick, in the hopes that Jim will find a new start on the offshore society called the Colony. Interactions displayed in a series of flashbacks, intermingled with current conversations further develop the character and the reader understands both his attitude and his reasons for escaping into the haze of alcohol abuse. All the characters have a care with which they are crafted, and their importance to Jim, and in the story are skillfully displayed in conversation and interaction that never feels forced or unrealistic. I do think that readers who are looking for more science fiction or apocalyptic story line may find the early part of the book drags, as the pacing is more character driven than fast paced and dramatic moments of climactic build. That changes with a bang just after, and the plot moves at a near frenetic pace to the end. I enjoyed the book, and while I thought that too many loose ends were left unresolved, it does provide a perfect lead in for another book in the series. A good read to share with your 15+ readers, the character of Jim will ring true and real to them and provide an opportunity for them to engage with a book that doesn’t condescend but speaks to their sense of adventure and empathy. I received an eBook copy from the author for purpose of honest review for my Indies Rock series on I am, Indeed. I was not compensated for this review, and all conclusions are my own responsibility.
Flotilla by Daniel Haight is a crossover apocalyptic science-fiction story about a fourteen-year-old boy named Jim, who leaves his mother on the main land to live with his father at the colony, a floating, fishing community in the middle of the ocean. He is sent to live with his father after getting out of rehab for alcohol abuse. He spends two summers with his father learning to deal with the strange environment of the colony when a terrorist attack occurs on the mainland throwing Jim’s world into chaos. The father leaves Jim and his visiting younger sister at the colony to fend for themselves, while he helps on the mainland. This book was sent to me for review. I read the prologue and liked the first person voice and character of Jim and the adventure the prologue promised, so I decided to read on and review the book. Unfortunately, this book dragged on forever with multiple editing problems and redundant passages that could be cut to shorten the work and help it move faster. The sci-fi apocalyptic part promised in the prologue doesn’t occur until seventy-five percent into the novel. The book starts out with a coming of age literary style about a boy coming to terms with alcohol abuse and a jail-bird father who abandoned him. Then near the end changes gears to an apocalyptic situation, almost as if the author didn’t know how to resolve the book he started writing, so decided to throw in the terrorist attack to liven the book up. I feel the terrorist attacks occur far too late in the novel for it to be a sci-fi apocalyptic story. It should have hit around the twenty-five percent range or at the latest the fifty percent range. Waiting until the end makes it feel like you’ve been thrown into a different novel. Twenty-five percent in would have been plenty of space to establish Jim’s character and his flaws, the colony, and his gypsy-like father. About fifty percent in, I became bored and almost stopped reading. I was tired of waiting for what the prologue promised. I didn’t stop. I began to skip, reading only dialog (which there is little of) and the beginning of paragraphs to get to what I was waiting for. Some readers may find Jim’s experiences on the ocean colony interesting if you are looking for a book that takes you out of your normal life and puts you in the everyday life of a boy living in a unique situation. Just be warned, the issues between Jim and his father are not resolved in this book. You will have to read on in a second book, which due to the terrorist attack, may or may not be the same story. Jim must end up at the colony or we don’t have a story, but I have a problem with the way the transfer is handled. What kind of mother sends her rehab son to live out on the ocean with a dad who was in prison and abandoned them all twelve years ago? What kind of a probation officer would agree to this situation? As a mother, I would fight tooth and nail to prevent my son from being sent off to a deadbeat dad. Maybe the mother is bad, too. She isn’t portrayed as a bad, uncaring mother who wants to get rid of the son she can’t control, so it doesn’t make sense to me. Jim, in my opinion, should be far more upset and angry with his dad than he is as well. That could have made a great character arc for the story instead of throwing in the terrorist attack. Maybe the mother loses a custody battle and is forced to send her son to the dad. The son doesn’t want to go to the dad he hates. Over time the two resolve their issues and maybe the son somehow helps the dad improve his character. These events may take place in a second or third novel. You’ll have to read on to find out. With the above in mind, I’d like to add this book ends abruptly and nothing is resolved or concluded. I’m beginning to wonder if new self-publishing authors know how to conclude a book with a satisfying ending. I will not read a second and third book by an author who has not concluded something, anything in the first book. I don’t want to waste my time reading four books only to find out it has a terrible conclusion. Prove to me that you know what you’re doing by concluding the first book and still leave enough unanswered for a second book. Do I recommend this book? Yes as long as you know what you’re getting. The character development is good and the setting is interesting. The author definitely has potential, but for me, my expectations were not met soon enough.