Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Drift House. the First Voyage” as Want to Read:
Drift House. the First Voyage
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Drift House. the First Voyage (Drift House #1)

3.60  ·  Rating Details  ·  577 Ratings  ·  67 Reviews
When three young children go to Newfoundland to stay with an eccentric uncle they have no idea of the adventures that lie ahead of them! On arrival at his house they realise quite quickly that life here will be different to New York. The house looks like a ship and seems to be beached on a hillside! Then the next morning when the children awake the house is floating on the ...more
Hardcover, 437 pages
Published September 1st 2005 by Bloomsbury UK (first published 2005)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Drift House. the First Voyage, please sign up.

Recent Questions

This question contains spoilers… (view spoiler)
This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 985)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Jul 30, 2016 Jeanette rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Jeanette by: Kathleen Hillenberg
Shelves: fantasy, children, fiction
My sister recommended this delightful book to me.

Dale Peck's Drift House is a whimsical tale of Susan, Charles and Murray-three children sent from their home in New York to stay with their bumbling Uncle Farley in Quebec, Canada following 9/11. Uncle Farley is a student of time - and there is something decidedly different about his latest acquisition, Drift House - not only does it resemble a galleon, it seems to be off kilter with the surrounding garden.

Next morning, the children wake up surr
Sep 18, 2012 Sara rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In aftermath of the terrorist attacks in New York City and Washington, the Oakenfeld family is scared. The oldest daughter, Susan, normally a BBC junkie, is banned from watching any news and before long she and her brothers, Charles and Murray, are sent off to live in Canada with their Uncle Farley. Uncle Farley's home is a large, rambling estate, Drift House, situated on the Bay of Eternity. Yet from the moment they arrive, the Oakenfeld children feel that there is something just a bit off with ...more
Genna Kaminski
"Drift House: The First Voyage" is a story about three siblings who go to live with their uncle in an old house that looks like a boat. The house is called the Drift House. The two older children start noticing weird things around the house that do not add up. When they wake up in the morning they realize that they are no longer on land; the house has washed out to sea. The house turns out to be a transtemporal vessel, which means it can travel across time. This house/vessel takes the 3 children ...more
Jul 03, 2011 Cball rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: young tweens
Shelves: tweens, audio, 2011
Audio. I'm continuously searching for that Potter-fantasy replacement. This is not it. The backseat crowed liked it more than me but just by a little. It started out really strong and enticing. Three siblings must leave New York City immediately following 9/11 in order to be safe. I was excited to find a youth book willing to use 9/11 as the backdrop. But that was as far as that story line went. They go to Canada to hang out with their Uncle Farley who lives at Drift House, a house which leaves ...more
Jul 26, 2012 Jams rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
In this story, three siblings find themselves adrift on the "Sea of Time" with their Uncle and a talking parrot, in the mysterious floating Drift House.

I definitely would have liked this book better if I had liked any of the kids, or the uncle...or even the parrot. The idea was interesting, but the character development was so annoying I almost didn't finish the book.

The best part of the book was the very last chapter, which was the glossary.

The messed up thing is I will probably read the next
Jan 11, 2014 Noodles rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was something I read either in middle school or early high school that I really enjoyed, and I found that even now, in college, it's still a great story!

One of the most spectacular things is the treatment of the background characters. The dynamics of the pirates and the mermaids is extremely interesting but that's spoilers. It should be sufficient to say that it is very different than the usual fantasy version of mermaids, even if their appearances are the same. It's just really nice the wa
Feb 16, 2008 Eyebright rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone who enjoys a good fantastical adventure tale
I really enjoyed this book. The children learn to get along and work with one another, which is something that I need to learn to do, they use big words, which I love, and it has pirates, and mermaids, and adventure!
The Drift house was a never-ending tale of mysteries, adventures, and especially voyages. After 9/11, Susan and her brother go to their uncles house and witness something very peculiar. The Drift house is a transtemporal vessel that drifts across vast bodies of water and hold many mysteries to be discovered. I thought this book was very complex in describing the unusual behavior in the butler and the uncle while also including suspense to keep the reader at the edge of his/her seat. I would high ...more
Pino Radenti
Drift house the first voyage is a story about the three Oakenfeld children, Susan, Murray and Charles sent off to live with their uncle Farley. Uncle Farley lives in a funny boat shaped house called drift house and it soon makes sense when the Oakenfeld children find themselves drifting at sea. As the house drifts on the sea of Time it starts to yield many secrets but some evil mermaids trick them into stopping time for ever. I think this book is very well worded and it has a very interesting st ...more
I first read this book when I was in Junior High and it's really stuck with me. I have since been wanting to slowly make my way through old books I read once upon a yesteryear and so I decided to pick this one up because it's summer and I think you can probably tell by the cover why I chose this particular title. This books is about three young children, Susan (12), Charley (9), and Murray (5) who are siblings and, after the attacks of 9/11, go to live with their Uncle Farley in Canada at an old ...more
Apr 23, 2008 Caitlin rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone who likes magic and animals
Recommended to Caitlin by: Mom
Summary: When Susan and her younger brother Charles and Murray, are sent to stay with their eccentric uncle Farley in Canada, little do they realize that they are stepping into the adventure of a lifetime. Uncle Farley lives in a dilapidated old house that looks like a ship, and when the children wake one morning to discover they've been washed out to sea, the name Drift House begins to make sense. Without sails or an engine to propel them, and with no communication from the world they know, Dri ...more
May 16, 2009 Beverly rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audio, fantasy, children-s
This attempt at a Narnia-style adventure - that is an adventure with deeper meaning - should have been great. Problems: too much undigested philosophy re. time, mortality produced a cold, dry tone in some places. One reviewer remarked that the author is trying too hard. I agree. There is also a strong hint of anti-Americanism to come in future episodes through the explicit suggestion that the people of the child-heroes' era (today, that is) are causing time to move improperly resulting in (perha ...more
Aug 27, 2013 Lindsey rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

This was a great summer read to share with my 8 year old. It took us a long time reading around so much summer fun, but we did it and loved it thoroughly. I think my son's question, "Mom, want to start The Lost Cities tomorrow?" (2nd book in the Drift House series), sums up how much he loved this adventurous tale of 3 young siblings navigating the Sea of Time.

This book includes smart, independent kids along with time travel, mermaids, pirates and talking creatures. My son chose this book because
Sarah Sammis
Sep 12, 2012 Sarah Sammis rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The reviews I've read of Drift House by Dale Peck either ignore the World Trade Center destruction or gloss it over. Regardless, it is the grim starting point of the book and the loss of life is one of the dominant themes of the book. It is also a pirate tale full of derring-do and time travel.

The book begins with Susan and her brothers, Charles and Murray, being driven to Canada from their home in Manhattan. Their mother wants them out of the city until she feels it is safe again for them to re
Aug 27, 2008 Julie rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Julie by: Zachary
This starts off like The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe: 3 resourceful yet believably bickering siblings get sent off to an unknown uncle’s eccentric house because of unsafe conditions at home (in this case, NYC right after 9/11), and magical adventures ensue.

The house in question is Drift House, a curiously galleon-shaped house which drifts out onto the Sea of Time. Susan, Charles, and Murray (the latter two whose names make me wonder if Peck was nodding to A Wrinkle in Time) each deal with
Sep 12, 2007 Melody rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It starts right after 9/11 in NYC, but quickly moves into the territory of magic. Three children, Susan, Charles and Murray are adrift and at sea in more than one fashion. The ways they cope with the strange and unfathomable happenings, as well as Peck's wonderful writing style, kept me turning pages well into the night. This book had me biting my lip trying to stay awake to finish one more page in the wee small hours, and when I finally gave up, it followed me into my dreams. I can't remember t ...more
Jun 07, 2008 Emily rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of Harry Potter, Narnia, well written fantasy
Shelves: ya
I'm a sucker for a good (ie, smart, well written) children's novel, but they're harder to find than one might imagine. What a joy to stumble upon Drift House! I actually read it for work, and what a pleasure. It's rare to find a fantasy novel (aside from Harry Potter) where the world of the book feels so grounded, real and complete. I love the characters (I see a bit of myself at 12 in our heroine, Susan), and the story is just a delight. It does weigh down a bit near the end of the climax, but ...more
Jul 22, 2011 Amy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: tween-reads
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Oct 17, 2008 Melanie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed this - it started off feeling slightly derivitave of The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, and did continue to use elements of other fantasy novels, but the characters were interesting (I wish there was more Murray, though, he was my favorite of the children) and the whole theme of time was fascinating. There were a couple places where I felt it could've been a little less heavy-handed with the "life lesson" stuff (lectures from adults about x, y, and z) but all in all I think ...more
Andd Becker
Students in fifth and sixth grades will enjoy reading this high-level- vocabulary book about the adventures of bright siblings.
Disclaimer: I stumbled upon an advanced reading copy of this book, so I don't know how much of it was edited later. I can only hope that it was a lot.

I liked the idea (traveling on a house boat through the sea of time) and the characters (espeically President Wilson, the parrot). But the story could have been at least 150 pgs. shorter. Peck goes on for pages about the scientific reasons behind the nature of the sea of time, and in the height of the conflict goes on about the nature of eternity,
Michelle Polk
Oct 15, 2008 Michelle Polk rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I thought this book was great. My children and I read it together. It was fun and full of excitement. It is full of intricate details of a puzzle that is completed by the end of the book. The characters are perfect for the story and no one is out of place. The work well together to find the solutions to every problem.

Three kids left an eccentric uncle who lives in an interesting house. From the moment the children arrive they know there is something amiss with the house but they just can't figu
Colby Johnson
Feb 13, 2016 Colby Johnson rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
good. interesting plot. lots of twists
Jun 29, 2012 Tim rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I should have realized there were problems with Drift House earlier. My daughter, who rarely does not finish a book, left her bookmark about a third of the way through and when asked said, "Oh, I just never got into that." It should be an interesting book. The kid characters have potential, as does the setting (a house that can sail on the sea of time). But the plot is plodding, the other characters, inexactly drawn, and the setting becomes vague and unfocused. Should have quit when my daughter ...more
Aug 20, 2008 Kathy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone
Recommended to Kathy by: stumbled on it at the library
Shelves: juvenile
We listened to this on tape in the car during our vacation and at first I had to beg everyone to give it a chance. By chapter 4 everyone wanted to listen to it. It was sort of like the Wanderer by Sharon Creech meets a Wrinkle In Time. Very inventive-- 2 brothers & a sister are sent to live w/ their eccentric uncle after 9/11.He lives in Drift House on the Bay of Eternity which turns out to be an inlet on the Sea of Time. Exciting action--time travel--feirce mermaids--characters tested--all ...more
May 02, 2013 Christy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: corben
We LOVED Drift House. My son read the next book in the series and enjoyed it as well. This book is safe for kids (no language, graphic violence). There is some death of mermaids but it's written more like they fall in the water and you just understand they're dead.

I really hope to see more books in this series as there are a few branching story lines that would make for great adventures in themselves.
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Currently listening to this one. Although a compelling, mysterious adventure, it's just so gloomy. Maybe it's the reader's deep voice. It's like spending hours and hours with Marvin the Paranoid Android sharing his feelings. The three main characters (two brothers and a sister) are well-crafted, and they continue to get more interesting as the story goes on. We'll see.
Jennifer Marie
Grade: B

One word: Tedious. I can see how kids would love this, but it was too "explained" and too much telling me "This is what will happen" by the narrator, then experiencing it through the children's eyes. That drives me nutty! Absolutely bonkers. Can't stand it!

That said, the writing wasn't half bad, but I won't be reading the sequel.
Jan 30, 2008 Allison rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: children
A very creative book about time, pirates, mermaids, etc. I got tired of the bickering kids at times, but it was very true to how kids really act and think. I liked the fact that every one of the kids had their own specific purpose and reasons why their talents and none other were needed in specific situations. I look forward to the next book.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 32 33 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Seaborne #1: The Lost Prince
  • The White City (The Clockwork Dark #3)
  • The Death Collector (Department of Unclassified Artefacts, #1)
  • Blaze of Silver (The de Granville Trilogy, #3)
  • The Magic Mirror: Concerning a Lonely Princess, a Foundling Girl, a Scheming King and a Pickpocket Squirrel
  • Justice (Lawless, #2)
  • Horns and Wrinkles
  • Raiders' Ransom (Raiders' Ransom, #1)
  • The Unknown Spy
  • The Black Paw (Spy Mice, #1)
  • The Peddler's Road (The Secrets of the Pied Piper, #1)
  • The Immortal Fire (Cronus Chronicles, #3)
  • Spell Robbers (The Quantum League, #1)
  • Searching for Super
  • North
  • The Prairie Thief
  • The Hidden Boy
  • The Water Castle
Dale Peck (born 1967 on Long Island, New York) is an American novelist, critic, and columnist. His 2009 novel, Sprout, won the Lambda Literary Award for LGBT Children's/Young Adult literature, and was a finalist for the Stonewall Book Award in the Children's and Young Adult Literature category.
More about Dale Peck...

Other Books in the Series

Drift House (2 books)
  • The Lost Cities: A Drift House Voyage

Share This Book