Synopses & Reviews
Set a decade ago in the often chaotic environment of Oakland, California, The Disaster Drill is an engrossing read both for the procedural aspects of an urban paramedic's life and for the interwoven plot of a young man navigating the challenges of growing and maturing. Dan's first book, COP: A Novel was published originally in 2009. The book was well received by a variety of readers and communities, and was especially applauded within the Law Enforcement community. Like COP, The Disaster Drill is founded in the real life experiences of Dan and his fellow first-responders in his younger years. In contrast to the story told in COP of a rookie, counter-culture police officer in San Francisco, this second outing is rooted in the experiences of a rock and roll and motorcycle-loving paramedic in Alameda County. Gritty, realistic episodes of both traumatic and routine 911 calls are at times hilarious and heartbreaking. Fictionalized characters and personal relationships carry the story along and provide a baseline of both tension and humor. The story follows Harlan and his unrefined paramedic partner, best friend and roommate, Ben, over the course of a year beginning in October of 2009. We ride-along with the duo as they mitigate serious medical emergencies and navigate a complicated dating landscape, made only more difficult by their own cringe-worthy ineptitude at matters of the heart. Harlan and Ben witness tragedy together, banter endlessly, and occasionally brawl, stupidly. Through the ups and downs of a close and sometimes awkward bond, Ben eventually provides the support and exhortation Harlan needs to take the next step to maturity and overcome his own traumatic experience.