Good Evening Everyone,
Happy Saturday. Hope you’re all enjoying your weekend, whatever it is you’re up to. Unfortunately, I’ve had a very grey and wet start to the weekend and it’s not had me in the best of moods. After the small taste of sunshine this week, I truly started to think we may get a bit of summer. I should have known better. But never mind. I will be away on holiday again in a couple of weeks for another vitamin D infusion. Until then, I’ll just look at photos like the one below to keep me going.
Thank you to @orionbooks and Adrian Mckinty for this advanced copy of The Island in return for an honest review. The Island was published on 17th May and you can get a copy here. Apologies I’m so behind with ARCs, I’m trying to catch up with my backlog.
Heather has found the man of her dreams in Tom. When they marry, Heather doesn’t just get Tom, she gets his teenage daughter and young son too and the new Baxter family go on a trip to the Australian outback. It’s a work trip for Tom, but the family use it as an opportunity to all spend time together and bond.
Out on a family day, the children are intent on seeing a koala bear and some locals tell them about Dutch Island. It’s off limits for tourists and non-locals, but it’s rich with wildlife. The Baxters find themselves on a ferry over to the island and things very quickly turn bad. There is a disturbing feeling straight away and after a terrible accident, Tom and Heather know that this was a bad idea.
Heather and the children end up being separated from Tom and it is Heather’s responsibility to try and get her and the children off the island. Considering that the children don’t trust her, the bushland is highly dangerous and the locals do not want them there, the odds are not in Heather’s favour, but she’s prepared to do the unthinkable to get to safety.
General Thoughts 🤔
Well this book was certainly edge of your seat, gripping, thrilling, madness. It was one of those books that just doesn’t stop being tense. When I thought there may be a silver lining, the clouds started rolling in and everything got progressively worse. The whole concept of the book is about whether or not the Baxters will make it off the island and my god I was invested in that family finding their way home.
Don’t get me wrong, some of it seemed a little far fetched in retrospect. Heather was a massage therapist with some Liam Neeson style very specific set of skills. Could she really have married into this family without any of them knowing she was capable of all that? Maybe so. There was just a little niggle in my head about it.
So ignoring the massage therapist point, Heather was an absolute bad ass and I would like to be her when I grow up. Was there anything that this woman did not know?! At the start of the book, she came across as a little bit “meh” and I wasn’t quite sure how I was going to feel about her. But as soon as things started to go awry, she well and truly came into her own and I loved her.
I really enjoyed the relationship between Heather and the children; Olivia and Owen. Their relationship was obviously quite taught and I’m not sure that either side really wanted to give the other a chance. Until they had no choice but to. It was lovely to see the children start to trust Heather and it was obvious that they would have done anything to help each other get off that island of horrors.
Writing Style ✍️
The way this story was told was probably what I enjoyed most about the book. If I could have read it from behind a pillow, I would have. There were some really tense scenes and some really uncomfortable scenes and when an author can draw those intense feelings of discomfort out of a reader, it amazes me.
I also loved how the island was described within the book. It was done to such a level that I felt that I could see it clear as day in my mind. That only increased the intensity for me. It was like I could feel the bush against my skin as I was reading.
Conclusion & Scoring 🎖
I wish it hadn’t taken me so long to read this book as I thoroughly enjoyed it. If I had had the opportunity I think this definitely could have been a book I devoured in one sitting. If you like to feel uncomfortable and on edge, then this is a must-read for you.