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Thursday, July 11, 2013

My review of The Island by Jen Minkman

About the book:

‘I walk toward the sea. The endless surface of the water extends to the horizon, whichever way I look.

Our world is small. We are on our own, and we only have ourselves to depend on. We rely on the Force deep within us, as taught to us by our forefathers.

If I were to walk westward from here, I would come across a barrier – the Wall. Behind it, there are Fools. At least, that’s what everyone says.

I have never seen one.’

Leia lives on the Island, a world in which children leave their parents to take care of themselves when they are ten years old. Across this Island runs a wall that no one has ever crossed. The Fools living behind it are not amenable to reason – they believe in illusions. That’s what The Book says, the only thing left to the Eastern Islanders by their ancestors.
But when a strange man washes ashore and Leia meets a Fool face to face, her life will never be the same. Is what she and her friends believe about the Island really true?

Or is everyone in their world, in fact, a Fool?

My review:

I listened to this book from start to finish today. The plot really pulled me in. Sometimes while I'm on a long drive I'll have the kindle voice read one of my e-books to me. The plot was easy to follow and the point of view was simple to track because the novel was written in the first person point of view. Sometimes I feel the story differently when I experience a book this way, but I really enjoyed this one. There were no annoying repetitious phrases to distract me. The dystopian plot paralleled some issues in our world today, like when it came to faith vs. trusting no one and relying only on yourself. I loved how the author showed that people will sometimes blindly follow things because that was all they knew. The fact that Star Wars was like their Bible amused me, but it also made a point. The author did a good job showing how a survival of the fittest philosophy is self-serving and can be dangerous. We all need to believe in something greater than ourselves. That was well done.

Toward the end of the story the reason for this reference to The Force and the Star Wars book as the gospel is revealed. I won't post a spoiler, but suffice to say it reminded me of the story about a ham that was cut off on one end for a hundred years. The tradition continues for several generations until one day someone asks why this is done, only to discover that at one time an ancestor had a pan that was too small. Despite later generations having an adequate sized pan, the tradition continued because that's how the family thought hams had to be cooked. So that's my way of giving you the gist of the core theme without telling you what happened. I found the main character's insight quite deep when she discovered the origin of their traditions. Other than some swear words sprinkled into the book, I didn't find anything offensive when I listened to the book. I would read another book by this author.

The Island was published by Amazon Digital Services, Inc. and released in May 2013.


Jen Minkman said...

Thanks very much for writing a review about the book on your blog! (I didn't even know it was possible to listen to it on Kindle, LOL :)

Tia said...


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