By: S.A. Bodeen
Robie is an experienced traveler. She’s taken the flight from Honolulu to the Midway Atoll, a group of Pacific islands where her parents live, many times. When she has to get to Midway in a hurry after a visit with her aunt in Hawaii, she gets on the next cargo flight at the last minute. She knows the pilot, but on this flight, there’s a new co-pilot named Max. All systems are go until a storm hits during the flight. The only passenger, Robie doesn’t panic until the engine suddenly cuts out and Max shouts at her to put on a life jacket. They are over miles of Pacific Ocean. She sees Max struggle with a raft.
And then . . . she’s in the water. Fighting for her life. Max pulls her onto the raft, and that’s when the real terror begins. They have no water. Their only food is a bag of Skittles. There are sharks. There is an island. But there’s no sign of help on the way.
This was a short book that I flew through quickly. I found myself excited to see what happens, but when it really mattered, I didn’t care much about what may happen. I do like how short the book was, because a survival story as plain and uneventful as this one shouldn’t be dragged on.
This book is obviously taken place in Hawaii, and the ocean between Honolulu and Midway Atoll, in the Pacific Islands. The writing style brought imagery, but not too much where it was overwhelming and you kept on asking yourself “wait. what is over here again?” because it’s not all described, but just enough so that the reader has a nice sense of where they are and why they are there. The character goes from developed island to charter plane to raft to deserted island to rescue boat. That’s a lot of places to explore in 231 pages. I think it’s done pretty well. The main character may get sea sickness, but I don’t want it.
The main character is annoying and unappreciative to say the least. She spends all day whenever she is at her Aunt’s getting Starbucks and binge-watching TV shows, and piercing her nose even though her parents will probably freak out whenever they see it. But one little creepy confrontation with a stranger on the street makes her run away on a flight straight home without as much as leaving a note for her Aunt to see when she comes back from her business trip. And let’s not talk about how stupid the Aunt is for leaving a girl who isn’t that responsible alone. I mean she doesn’t even tell her Aunt that her friend can’t come out and check on her because she won’t want her to send her home. Plus, Robie is the clumsiest and stupidest protagonist I have ever had the misfortune of reading about.
She watched the pilot episode of Lost the day before her plane crashes into the ocean. That practically sums up the convenient (or not-so-convenient) list of plot points that make the book so predictable and downright stupid at times. Robie knew very well that she had to be weighed before heading aboard the flight, yet she just assumed they already had her weight in their system, so she thought “what the heck, a few pounds won’t make much of a difference.” Wrong. But that files under Character Development, so I will not get into much detail. Overall, the book was good, but the plot and character(s), not so much.
Let me know your thoughts on this book and my review in the comments below!