The Island by M.A. Bennett
Genres: YA, Contemporary, Thriller
Publication date: July 25th 2018 by Hotkey
Link is a fish out of water. Newly arrived from America, he is finding it hard to settle into the venerable and prestigious Osney School. Who knew there could be so many strange traditions to understand? And what kind of school ranks its students by how fast they can run round the school quad – however ancient that quad may be? When Link runs the slowest time in years, he immediately becomes the butt of every school joke. And some students are determined to make his life more miserable than others . . .
When a school summer trip is offered, Link can think of nothing worse than spending voluntary time with his worst tormentors. But when his parents say he can only leave Osney School – forever – if he goes on the trip, Link decides to endure it for the ultimate prize. But this particular trip will require a very special sort of endurance. The saying goes ‘No man is an island’ – but what if on that island is a group of teenagers, none of whom particularly like each other? When oppressive heat, hunger and thirst start to bite, everyone’s true colours will be revealed. Let the battle commence . . .
The main character, Link, is a victim of bullies in his new high school. This school is pure definition of stereotypes – you can find here jocks, emo girl, etc. It’s like everyone has a strict role and has to follow rules how to behave.
To be honest I did’t really like any characters from this book. Their behavior in school was absurd and I was shocked that teachers allowed it. For me whole this school seems unrealistic, like some completely different dystopian world. And it didn’t get better at the island. Link, who kind of irritated me at the beginning but still I felt sorry for him then, became character who I hated the most. The way he treated others was unbelievable and made me put down book a few times.
I’m not a person who is easily surprised by plot as usually I try to predict all possibilities. Unfortunately this book didn’t manage to shocked me at all as every plot twist was pretty obvious and everytime I could feel that some ‘twist’ is coming I was really disappointed with result.
What I really enjoy in this book were pop culture reference. I just love stuff like this in book and I always check connection between things that are mentioned in books. For example Desert Island Discs – it was the first time for me to her about it but as this radio program is real I manage to find some really interesting things about part of culture I’m interested in.
The Island is really well written and it was easy read. The topic was also interesting but I think it should be approach differently.
Before reading this book I saw that people compare it with Lord of the Flies. And if you really expecting something like this you will probably be disappointed.
M. A. Bennett is half Venetian and was born in Manchester, England, and raised in the Yorkshire Dales. She is a history graduate of Oxford University and the University of Venice, where she specialized in the study of Shakespeare’s plays as a historical source. After university she studied art and has since worked as an illustrator, an actress, and a film reviewer. She also designed tour visuals for rock bands, including U2 and the Rolling Stones. She was married on the Grand Canal in Venice and lives in north London with her husband, son, and daughter.