Published November 1, 2016
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
When Flight MH 370 Malaysia Airlines went missing in 2014 like everyone else I was in disbelief…how on earth could a plane just disappear? After reading the description for Final Boarding, I was excited to begin reading this novel.
Patrick Baldwin had always love the sky and airplanes. After a thrilling skydive when he was a freshman in college, he decided to switch his major to aerospace engineering. He wanted to improve the way people travel in the sky.
So it’s no surprise when the forty-two year old begins work for a commercial airline company, Phoenix Airlines. The company was relatively new, only two years old but growing rapidly. Royce Killington, the wealthy entrepreneur founded Phoenix Airlines with the idea of making travel affordable for everyone and travelers were all treated the same, with no first class, business class etc. Not out to make a huge profit, this CEO wanted everyone to know the luxury of travel. Everything was state of the art and high-class, from the food to the in-flight entertainment. This was making travel and vacation planning available to lower-income families with most tickets costing $99 and the maximum cost of $500.
When he’s promoted to senior engineer by the CEO, Patrick almost can’t believe it. His boss tells him that his first task will be to attend a conference in China with the company that manufacturers Phoenix Airlines, safety systems. Royce’s new goal is to make history providing accident free travel. Patrick and three other engineers are to leave that evening on the flight to China.
But after the meeting and Royce leaves, the other engineers bring up another meeting they are attending in China and they want Patrick on board. They have been working on something new and this discovery and their project will apparently change the world and the method in which people travel. They will be meeting with another tech company on the trip. But they don’t want their CEO to know anything about it. Patrick has questions but they tell him he will be advised of everything in due time. Until the meeting in Beijing everything is hush-hush.
Patrick wonders if they feel guilty that they are doing this behind Royce’s back. This would mean leaving Phoenix Airlines. Their boss is a good man, even donating his income to charity. For him it was about doing good for humanity.
“Royce wanted to do good for mankind. We are going to do better. It’s not being selfish. We are doing a service for the future of this country and this world. You will understand in a few days. It is the biggest discovery of the twenty-first century, and you will soon be a part of it.”
Patrick’s head is spinning with everything he’s been told in the last few hours. Just promoted and now the possibility of striking out on their own with this new venture. He’s very intrigued and even flattered that these highly educated intelligent men want him to be a part of their team. But of course until the meeting he has no idea of what any of this means for his future.
After packing and having a few celebratory drinks, Patrick falls asleep. He wakes and rushes to the airport. He arrives just in time to hear the final boarding call for flight 619. He’ll make it if he runs. Patrick sprints towards the gate and doesn’t notice the spilled soda on the ground. He slides through it, loses his balance, and crashes to the ground banging his head . Patrick is okay but he’s missed the flight. He watches in devastation as Phoenix Airlines Flight 619 heads down the runway for takeoff…
Patrick doesn’t know it yet but falling asleep and a bit of spilled soda actually saved his life.
He books another flight for the next morning. When he gets there the next day right away he can tell something is wrong. People are rushing around and overhears something about how contact was lost with a flight and it can’t be found on the radar.
The flight? Phoenix Airline Flight 619
He’s thankful that he wasn’t on that flight, yet he’s devastated that his colleagues as well as many other people weren’t so lucky.
Where is Flight 619? What happened? A mechanical failure? Was something done intentionally? So many questions arise as the media works everyone into a frenzy. Many people, including Patrick feel like they are not being told the entire story.
Patrick just wants to know the truth behind the disappearance. Weird things start happening the further he delves into what is going on. He feels like he’s being watched and followed. He becomes suspicious of everyone.
Who can he really trust?
Final Boarding is a fictional story but is definitely inspired by Flight MH 370 Malaysia Airlines that disappeared in 2014. I think that made this an even more interesting read. I remember wondering how it could possibly happen. How could a plane go missing? Especially in this day and age.
A thought-provoking and enjoyable read. Very intense with well paced action that kept me turning the pages. I honestly had no idea what was going to happen next. I occasionally had to go back and re-read a page or two as there are quite a few characters and I had a bit of difficulty keeping them all straight. But at the same time those same characters all added something important to the story. I liked the plot and how the author pulled it all together. I agree with other reviewers that said this would make a good movie.
Thank you, A.J. Mayers for providing me with an advanced copy for me to read and provide my honest review.