Ebook review: Mukade Island (The Island Chronicles) by Nikki Bennett

About the author: “I’m originally from Virginia, US, but for the past few years I’ve been living…in Japan. During our travels I’ve picked up a plethora of mythological and cultural tidbits and am having fun incorporating them into my stories.” Nikki has a website and blog for more information and insight.

From the dust cover: “Fifteen year-old Jack has no idea how he ended up on the island. He doesn’t know who is responsible for exiling him to this desolate place. But he does know two things. He is no longer on Earth. And if he can’t find a way to escape, he will die.

The island holds plenty of horrors, and the other humans trapped here know it. Dangerous creatures prowl the beach at night. A poisonous sea cuts off any chance of escape. And a vicious tribe living on the opposite shore intends on taking the island over for their own. The starving, frail souls who befriend Jack have given up all hope of rescue, all chance of survival.

Jack isn’t willing to accept his fate so easily. Guided by the island’s only friendly natives–a trio of strangely intelligent purple bats–Jack delves deep into the island’s caverns and stumbles upon a treasure that can save them all. Now, Jack must utilize this gift to rally his friends, escape over the perilous sea, and find a way home.”

My Ebook review: What a great story! I really enjoyed Mukade Island. It is splendidly balanced for the reader with both challenges, and successes; luck and trials. I had to race through the book to find out what happened next whether it was as I feared or as I hoped.

This is a fabulous story about trying to survive on a rather peculiar island anti-paradise: it is no picnic and clearly one should take the dark seriously.

The ebook is written for a younger audience in mind but this does not mean that it is not a very fine read for any age. The concepts in the book are well defined and there is a clear thread of learning through experiment and observation combined with pay-offs for the willingness to take risks. One aspect of the book that makes it appealing to a more general audience are the setbacks and challenges and the way in which horrible events are portrayed.
I was reminded of “Robinson Crusoe” which is, in a sense, one of the founders of the castaway story genre in more modern times. Daniel Defoe had the real life events of the life of Alexander Selkirk to inspire his beautiful and melancholic story. In a sense then “Mukade Island “could be considered a science fiction version brought into the modern world. Instead of the loneliness and solitude, though, a social network with all of the problems that can bring. I do not hope that Nikki Bennett had any real life experiences upon which to base this nightmare island!
This book is the first of a series and I am looking forward to the next installment. I want to understand more of this place with the purple sky.

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