Well, Hot Diggity Dang!! It’s been a while since I read a thriller that had me shouting that after reading it and wanting to share my excitement about it. I read only two thrillers in 2022 that evoked that reaction in me.
I finished the year with one and read the other a bit back. It’s getting harder to find stories that are different and not the same old stale bread in every book. While I enjoyed 36 of the 48 thrillers/suspense, 22 were memorable, and 10 were standouts.
My biggest thrilling surprise ARC of the year was from a title that sat on my unread NG shelf for 9 months before I finally dived into it.
The Island by Adrian McKinty
Why it was my biggest thrilling surprise
The Island is an exciting fast-paced, imaginative, purely entertaining over the top relentless suspenseful survivalist adventure that I did not expect to like. Once I started, I couldn’t escape this high-stakes/dangerous cat-and-mouse game of survival until that last page. Being surprised by how much I enjoy a story is one of the thrilling things about reading for me.
What is going on between the covers
New wife and stepmom, Heather, her husband, and his two children are on a working /family vacation in the Australian outback. With their limited time, they decided to adventure to a remote family-owned Dutch Island, off-limits to outside visitors and accessible only by ferry.
As soon as they set foot on the island, something doesn’t feel right about the people there, and they want off as quickly as they can, leading to a shocking incident that sets off a chain of dangerous events for Heather and her family.
My two cents
It’s all about the thrill of the gripping cat-and-mouse hunt between underestimated Heather and the over-the-top family. The hunt is brilliantly paced, speeding up and slowing down just enough to catch my breath, with something new happening to keep me glued to the pages. The tension is relentless, and the continued danger moves the story forward. While it relies on familiar tropes for this genre and stereotype characters, there is something unique, exciting, and different with every turn of the story, and it has a rewarding ending. While there is nothing to take seriously, it is pure entertainment, the action is exciting, and I was on the edge of my seat to see what Heather would do next.
I loved Heather and while her actions are not believable, her motivation, drive and fight to keep her family safe is the heart of the story.
I received a copy from the publisher through NG.
Setting: remote island/ Australian outback
Genre: Thriller: survival adventure
Published: May 2022/read Dec 2022
Source: NetGalley/publisher Little, Brown and Company
My review for my other thrilling surprise of 2022 to come!!