Gone to Drift by Diana McCaulay

Published: Saturday, 11 March 2017 Written by Yasmine Pascal

Gone to drift
By: Diana McCaulay
Publisher: Papillote Press
Published: February 28th 2016
ISBN Number: ISBN 978-0-9931086-1-7


Gone to drift takes place in a fishing village, in Jamaica. This story focuses on Conrad Saunders who is a lost at sea and his grandson, Lloydie who is relentlessly trying to find him. In Lloydie’s quest to find his grandfather, he sparks many conflicts especially with his father, Vernon Saunders, and he also uncovers scary truths about his family. While all this is taking place in the village, Conrad Saunders is stranded, trying desperately to cling on to life, with food and water run low with every passing day. In Gone to drift many themes are explored for example : family relationships, poverty and survival.


My favorite character in this story is Conrad Saunders. This is because of his will to live throughout the story and I also think he is one of the most relatable characters. Conrad is stranded at sea and no matter how many days pass he never gives up the fight to live. With no food or water his fate is almost predictable, but even though he knew he had a slim chance of survival, that never stopped him from clinging on to life. Often times when the chances of a terrible outcome is much higher than a good one people still cling on to the hope that the good will succeed. This can be seen in hospitals when patients know they do not have long to live, they still hope they would beat expectations and be able to continue to live their lives and this can also be seen at home when you did something bad and you hope your parents will not get angry and not punish you. Maybe that is part of human nature, no matter the odds we still hold on to the hope that good will prosper and that is probably what made Conrad such a relatable character.

I thoroughly enjoyed reading the book. I felt as if I was there and I went through all the adventures with Conrad and Lloydie. The use of the Jamaican dialect made it more authentic and much more interesting. My favorites parts of the book is when we got an insight into Conrad’s life and this really helped develop the character and give readers a better understanding why he did not do certain things, for example use dynamite to catch fish.

I would recommend this book to anyone 14 years and older, especially someone who appreciates the use of dialect in a story.

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