Saturday, July 19, 2014

Short & Simple Reviews: The Island & The Waves

This is a place for books that I didn't fully review.
Maybe I listed my likes and dislikes, had a little short paragraph, or a few sentences to convey my feelings on the book, but whatever the "review" is, all of them are short and simple. (hence the clever name)

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

The Island  (The Island #1)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?

*NOTICE: The Ebook is currently free on both Amazon & Nook!
I see a lot of complaints about the fact that this book was about a society based on a Star Wars notebook. I know, it sounds ridiculous, and that's what everyone else seems to think, but the idea actually seems plausible. I'm trying to say this without spoilers, so forgive me if I'm being vague, but if a not-yet established society discovered a book, wouldn't they assume that the book tells the truth? That the book is an account of their ancestors? I mean, if they have no society, they might assume such a thing and that's what happens in this book. And I found it very interesting to see it.
I did have an issue with the pacing of the book. The book goes by fast, leaving very little room for detail or world-building. I understand, though, that the author was under a word limit which retrained her from going into too much detail, so I won't complain about it too much.
Overall, a pretty quick, interesting novella.

I hereby give this book
3 Wheels
Meaning: I liked it.

The Waves (The Island, #2)
The first memory I have of my grandfather is of a moment that we share together.
I’m sitting on his knee looking out over the harbor. Grandpa is smoking a pipe. He points at the horizon. “Look, Walt. Our ships are out there. And one day, another even more beautiful ship will appear at the horizon. A mighty ship to take us all away. And Annabelle will be at the front deck with open arms, inviting us all to join her on board.”
“Why don’t we sail to her ourselves?” I want to know.
“Because she promised she would come,” granddad replies. “And in that promise we trust. It’s only the Unbelievers who think they can do everything themselves. They have no faith in the Goddess.”

Walt lives in Hope Harbor, an island community that has put its trust in salvation from across the sea. The townspeople wait patiently, build their ships to sail out and welcome the Goddess, and piously visit the temple every week. Horror stories to scare their children are told about the Unbelievers on the other side of Tresco.
But not all is what it seems. Walt has questions that no one can answer, and when his best friend and cousin Yorrick is killed in an accident, he digs deeper to find out the truth about the origins of Hope Harbor’s society… and the secrets of the temple.

Return to the world of The Island and discover what Walt's life was like before and after he met Leia!

I was surprised by this book, since I was expecting a sequel, but this is actually a companion novella. You can actually read this book without The Island, since they take place at the same time, just different points-of-view.
The Waves follows Walt, who we were introduced to in The Island. In this novella we get to see his side of the story as well as what it's like at Hope Harbor.
I actually enjoyed this book more than The Island. As the author was not on a word limit, there is more details and world-building in this book! I liked getting some questions answered as well as getting a deeper look into both sides of the island!
Overall, this is turning out to be an interesting little dystopian novella series and I am definitely going to look into the next book, The Deep.
And as far as recommendations go, I say give this series a try!

I hereby give this book
3.5 Wheels
Meaning: I liked it, but it wasn't quite amazing.

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