Monday, March 2, 2015

All About Middle Grade Review: Shipwreck Island

Shipwreck Island (Shipwreck Island, 1) by S.A. Bodeen, July 29, 2014. 192 pages. Published by Feiwel & Friends. Source: publisher.
Sarah Robinson is deeply troubled in the wake of her dad’s second marriage. She now has to deal with a new stepmom and two stepbrothers, Marco, who is her age, and Nacho, who’s younger. Even though they’ve all moved from Texas to California to start life as a new, blended family, none of the kids seem remotely happy about it.

Sarah’s dad and stepmom then decide to take the whole family on a special vacation in order to break the ice and have everyone get to know one another. They’ll fly to Tahiti, charter a boat, and go sailing for a few days. It’ll be an adventure, right?

Wrong. Dead wrong.  
First Sentence:
Sarah Robinson had been ordered to pack a suitcase and, to the best of her ability, she was going to use that task to express her displeasure at the mess her life had become.

So, Shipwreck Island, was quite the fascinating read for me. Even though at times I felt the animosity between Sarah and Marco was overplayed, I really enjoyed this one because it was such an exciting short read that was hard to put down.

As far as I know, this is the first book written by S.A. Bodeen that I have read. And while it was definitely interesting and hard to put down, I was a little disappointed in the whole step-sibling angst as it has been done way too many times before. Yes, I can imagine that it would be hard to suddenly find your family expanded to include people you barely know, but, couldn't there be a better way to portray those feelings than with poor behavior. Honestly, seeing the way Marco and Sarah acted towards each other and their parents reminded me of my dogs (there was many a scuffle when we brought the second one home a week later {they were even from the same litter}).
   Slight annoyance over the bickering between the step-siblings aside, I enjoyed Shipwreck Island because the story was interesting and I liked seeing them all come together. Sure, I would have liked to see them be a little less antagonistic towards each other, but I guess things didn't go all that bad all things considered.

What I really ended up enjoying about this one would have to be the adventure portion. It kind of reminded me of the Journey to the Center of the Earth movie, so, it was definitely a fun read from start to finish. Yet, while it was thrilling in an adventurous sort of way it was the outlandish circumstances of the shipwreck that intrigued me. Why, because it just seemed unnatural that storm that broke out and stranded them on that island. My hope is that maybe in the second installment we'll find out more of why they were stranded as well as what those things were that they spotted lurking around the island.

In the end, while there were somethings that annoyed me (see earlier in review), it was a generally interesting read. One that I am looking forward to seeing where the story will go next and how the circumstances will affect the characters, as well, as how they'll cope with being stranded upon the island.

Final Verdict: Shipwreck Island- An interesting, adventurous read that I cannot wait to see where it goes in the next volume.

Shipwreck Island earns

This book was received from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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