Ship Breaker by Paolo Bacigalupi
We are introduced to a world where oil is scarce, and fortunes are made and lost scavenging on the giant hulks of old beached oil tankers. Nailer, our main character, finds out the hard way that no one is to be trusted in the cut throat world of scavenging. He is becoming too big for his work – stripping copper wired from old oil tankers. Stuck in a cabin on the beach, with no food, no money and no way to earn his keep, he dreams of a lucky strike – his one big chance to find his fortune. In the aftermath of a hurricane, aboard a shipwrecked clipper, his opportunity comes, and with it, more danger than he can imagine. What Nailer finds aboard the clipper will change his life forever!