Rutledge, an aging, divorced man, has treated himself to a Cruise on the Mariola. The Cruise is not just any cruise. It’s the whole shebang. It’s around the world. It’s a lifestyle change: G & Ts and tuxedos and cigars and cognac galore. The service is top-rate. And Rutledge’s steward, Raoul, is a good kid.
But then a day trip to a Caribbean port ends in commotion. Some people don’t make it back onto the ship. Rutledge, nonplussed, makes use of the vacant machines in the gym and the unoccupied loungers on deck. But soon, crew members seem few and far between, and the menu in the Captain’s Mess significantly diminished. Rutledge gets the feeling that something is amiss. And that’s just unacceptable.
Welcome aboard Esme Keith’s debut dystopic novel, a cunning parody of modern day luxury and the coveted “all-inclusive” vacation, from the refreshingly blunt point of view of a man unable to see beyond his own needs, with hilarious results.