Here we have a sequel to Moby Dick. Now I have to admit I never read Moby Dick. I carried it around in my backpack for a few weeks during high school but could never read very much of it. It seemed long and boring, and I'm sure now that I'm older I might appreciate it more. All I knew about Ishmael was the “Call me Ishmael” line.
Philip Josė Farmer wrote a very different story as the 'sequel.' Ishmael is the lone survivor of the sinking Pequod. He is rescued by another ship. Not long after that the rescue ship slips through reality. It arrives in a possible distant future of Earth, long after the oceans have mostly evaporated away. The rescue ship falls thousands of feet to the slimy salt below destroying a sky ship in the process. Ishmael manages to be the only survivor of this second disaster.
The rest of the book is about Ishmael's explorations of his new world and learning to deal with the strange creatures and natives. He uses his now unique knowledge to help the native tribe that adopts him. The whole story has the feel of something written by Edgar Rice Burroughs (including a beautiful high priestess).
The format of the book is unusual in that it is not broken up into chapters. It is one long non-stop adventures without and breaks. It is also much shorter than Moby Dick, making it a very quick read.
Strange creatures inhabiting the sea of air. Trap filled dungeons. Airships. Pulpy goodness.
If you are a fan of Burroughs you'll probably like this book. If you loved Moby Dick you might not, but then again it is a quick read and might end up surprising you.