I’m in shock. A book hangover. The Island by Olivia Levez is, at its heart, a castaway character development that has you longing for a happy ending. Frances did not deserve all the heartache that came along with being a lower class citizen.
Beginning the novel was tough, it dove straight in, with such a distinct writing style that I must admit I was at a loss for a couple of pages until it really began to suck me in.
What can I say about this novel? Other than, not only was it a brilliantly unique writing style of snapshot chapters but the novel offers a social commentary on children that are too old for the system but too young to face the heartache alone and therefore stuck somewhere in between.
The Island is about young adult Frances who has had to grow up quickly in an unfair world in order to look after her younger brother Johnny. We, as the reader, watch as Frances is escorted with fellow young offenders to an island in the Indian Ocean to learn team building skills after an undisclosed event that caused Frances to become unhinged. We observe the crash that leaves her stranded and take in her surroundings as our own.
Olivia Levez has an incredible way with words. Not only is her character believable but we understand her misguided motives, her frustrations as she develops as a character and we fall into admiration for Frances attempts at survival.
This novel has its way with you. Like the threatening waves of the ocean, the pages wash in and out, gripping you tighter and pushing you further and further out to sea. I was astounded by this novel and I hope you will be too.