Saturday, March 16, 2013

Island Explorer / Dan Scheffler

Reviewed by: BigAl

Genre: Travel Memoir

Approximate word count: 70-75,000 words

Kindle  US: YES  UK: YES  Nook: YES  Smashwords: YES  Paper: YES
Click on a YES above to go to appropriate page in Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or Smashwords store


“Dan Scheffler lives just outside Cape Town, South Africa with his wife and son.

He loves rough travelling, mountains, and the sea.
He is a doctor in general family practice, but tries not to let work interfere too much with his surfing.

When the Cape winters get cold or the Southeaster howls incessantly in summer, he escapes by writing about wild places and tropical trips.”

For more, visit Scheffler’s website or blog.


“A wild adventure through Sumatra’s jungles to the fabled Mentawai Islands in search of pristine beaches, undiscovered coral reefs, and perfect waves takes a group of surfers on a rollercoaster journey aboard the Island Explorer, a traditional Indonesian sailing ship. But the future becomes uncertain when the captain jumps ship and the stand-in skipper slowly becomes unhinged in the tropical heat.”


Even a land-locked couch potato like me is familiar with the surfer’s quest for the perfect wave and can get some vicarious thrill from this story of the author’s search through the islands of Indonesian on such a quest before many of the places he went became well known in the surfing world. As someone who likes to know a little bit about a lot of things, even things I’m unlikely to ever do, the surfing part of the story was interesting, entertaining, and even educational. Beyond the surfing adventure, there were plenty of lessons to be learned from Scheffler’s experience about life’s tradeoffs (sacrificing in one area of life to meet goals in another), the balance of work and play, and an inspiration for those of us who dream about quests of our own.


Uses South African (UK) spelling conventions. A small amount of adult language.

Format/Typo Issues:

No significant issues.

Rating: **** Four stars

1 comment:

Inge H. Borg said...

I am not a surfer, and I am not a jock (as a matter of fact, I am a 70-year old 'nice' lady)--but I have done a fair amount of ocean sailing and, thus, I clicked on Dan Scheffler's blog

If his book reviewed here is written in half as amusing a style as his blog, I would have hoped for a more deserving review--in addition to the 4-stars. It just shows that even "independent" reviews are subjective according to the reviewes likes and experience.

Inge H. Borg
Author of Sirocco, Storm over Land and Sea