Joe Jarvis, a 27 year old author, has published his second major work of fiction. A fast paced dystopian thriller, Flight Grounded follows a Vermont man named Jake Evans as he flees agents of the state in an attempt to escape to Canada after being accused of carrying out a terrorist attack.
Jarvis said he got the idea for the novel when he was thinking about how little first hand knowledge he had about the world.
“We can fall into this routine of thinking that we really understand more about the world around us than we actually do. I got the idea for this book when I was thinking one day: there really is very little about what we are told by the media and our peers that we can actually verify for ourselves. Most of what we know about the world, we basically have to trust the source of the information that they are telling the truth, but not only that, also that they know the truth, and what they have seen and heard is the truth. I couldn’t personally prove 90% of the events and circumstances I ‘know’ to be ‘true’”.
In the novel, Flight Grounded, Jake Evans knows something sinister is afoot when he wakes up on a Europe bound airplane that is still on the runway with every other passenger out cold. Despite his confusion, Jake manages to slip free from the flight crew’s attempts to stop him, and blend in with shoppers in a nearby plaza. But his troubles are just beginning. The airplane he escaped blows up, and the official story is that Jake is the culprit.
Who is responsible for the attack, and why, is a mystery to Jake, but he finds assistance in his efforts to flee and understand. What Jake is told about the world around him might just be too outrageous to believe, but he doesn’t have much time to think. With helicopters swirling and tracking dogs barking in the distance, Jake is led on a frenzied flight through the forest.
Jake doesn’t know who he can trust, what is reality, and why he has found himself caught up in this mess. All he knows is that he doesn’t want to be caught, and reaching the Canadian border may be his only shot at salvation.
Joe Jarvis said he thinks his work of fiction may come “too close for comfort” at some points.
“My hope is that this novel is going to make people’s hearts race, and stomachs sink, and probably at some points, get this nagging fear in the back of their minds that, holy shit, what if this was all true?”
Joe Jarvis’ first novel, Anarchy in New England, was published in May of 2015. It was about a futuristic society without government, in which the CEO of a large security company attempts to take over the region and form a government. Flight Grounded is a shorter book; at just under 25,000 words it is considered a novella. While government and corruption is a common theme in his writings, Jarvis says that Flight Grounded is worlds apart from Anarchy in New England.
“Flight Grounded is told from the perspective of the main character, Jake, and has definite dystopian elements to it. I’m proud of Anarchy in New England, but I had set out with a goal of introducing people to a functional anarchist society. With Flight Grounded, I aimed first and foremost to entertain the reader. But it also goes deeper than that, to stir up the mind to question the world around us. There’s no teaching or preaching, just a feast for thought.”
Flight Grounded is available on Amazon in paperback and e-book. Non-fiction writings by Joe Jarvis can be found on his blog, JoeJarvis.me