Drifters

Drifters
Author(s)
Age Range
8+
Release Date
May 10, 2022
ISBN
978-0062976963
Buy This Book
      
Jovie is adrift. She’d been feeling alone ever since her best friend, Micah, left her behind for a new group of friends—but when Micah went missing last fall, Jovie felt truly lost.

Now, months later, the search parties have been called off, and the news alerts have dried up. There’s only Jovie, biking around Far Haven, Washington, putting up posters with Micah’s face on them, feeling like she’s the only one who remembers her friend at all.

This feeling may be far closer to the truth than Jovie knows. As strange storms beset Far Haven, she is shocked to discover that Micah isn’t just missing—she’s been forgotten completely by everyone in town. And Micah isn’t the only one: there are others, roaming the beaches, camped in the old bunkers, who have somehow been lost from the world.

When Jovie and her new friend Sylvan dig deeper, they learn that the town’s history is far stranger and more deadly than anyone knows. Something disastrous is heading for Far Haven, and Jovie and Sylvan soon realize that it is up to them to save not only Micah, but everyone else who has been lost to the world and set adrift—now, in the past, and in the future.

Editor review

1 review
Disappearing in plain sight.
Overall rating
 
4.3
Plot
 
5.0
Characters
 
4.0
Writing Style
 
4.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable)
 
N/A
What worked:
The plot immediately becomes a poser as the early pages present seemingly disconnected characters and events. The prologue describes a fiery hole opening in the sky which sinks a ship, killing most of the crew. The prologue is written by the lone survivor, although his life ends soon after. The first chapter focuses on Sylvan being questioned by the sheriff about the disappearance of Jovie several years earlier. Then, chapter two immediately turns to Jovie and describes her attempts to find out what happened to her friend Micah. So, readers are required to piece together many clues to figure out how a century-old shipwreck, a young boy, and two missing girls are connected. As we read about Josie, the main character, we’re forced to wonder how and when she’ll disappear, as we’re foretold in the first chapter.
I read a book recently about forgotten characters, but this book offers a strange twist. Jovie is the only character that remembers Micah, and that presents a question as to why. Teachers, friends, and Jovie’s mom don’t remember her, so why is Jovie the only one who can? Other characters temporarily recall Micah after seeing her picture, but the memories quickly fade. Mental health is an underlying issue, as revelations of relationships, family dynamics, and self-image come to light. How people view themselves often influences how others perceive them. Inner doubts and depression remain hidden below the surface allowing despair to overtake the mental well-being of the drifters.
The story becomes a mystery, as questions surrounding the gradient abound. The gradient is a portal to another universe, and very little is known about it. What is causing it and what is its purpose? Why are people drifting, and what happens to them? The author provides explanations, but different scenarios are possible based on the information, with the truth often just out of reach. Josie struggles to understand what she learns and she never gives up hope of finding her friend. Sylvan is only ten years old, but his research and logical thinking unlock many answers that help Josie in her quest. However, the journey presents many dangers that the characters can’t even imagine, and the countdown to the next gradient produces increased tension.
What didn’t work as well:
The plot moves fairly slowly, as Jovie tries to figure out what’s going on with her missing friend. Her investigation is hampered since no one remembers Micah, and Josie meticulously follows every clue. Useful information doesn’t come readily, so the process plods along. The memory angle isn’t explained satisfactorily, so questions remain.
The Final Verdict:
Disappearing in plain sight. The conflict is imaginative and compelling as the story includes other dimensions, friendship, and mental health. Readers will probably identify with some of the challenges and find hopeful messages within the story. The overall book is entertaining and thought-provoking, and I recommend you give it a shot.
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