Posted in Romance

Uncharted (#1.5) – Tracey Garvis Graves

17268741Synopsis

When twenty-three-year-old dot-com millionaire Owen Sparks walked away from his charmed life, he had one goal in mind: get as far away as possible from the people who resented his success, or had their hand out for a piece of it. A remote uncharted island halfway around the world seemed like a perfectly logical place to get away from it all.

Calia Reed wasn’t part of Owen’s plans. The beautiful British girl – on holiday in the Maldives with her brother, James – made Owen wonder if getting away from it all might be a lot more enjoyable with a carefree girl who didn’t know anything about the life he left behind.

But Owen had no idea how much his carefully detailed plans would go awry. Nor did he realize that a decision he made would have such a catastrophic effect on two passengers who boarded a plane in Chicago.

And when Owen shows up at Anna and T.J.’s door with an incredible story to tell, everyone involved will learn just how much their lives are intertwined.

4 / 5 stars

My review of On The Island can be found HERE
(My reviewing has gotten better since this review haha)

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My Review

When I read On The Island back last year, I told you all that I was captivated. Captivated by what the book was about – being stranded on a desert island and overcoming the trials and tribulations Anna and TJ overcame together, as the years went on. It was about surviving and making that island ‘home , hoping  in time, they would get off the island and back home.

Well, this story is about Owen Sparks…you remember him being mentioned right? The guy who Anna and TJ thought was Bones?  Yeah, turns out he’s not. So who is Bones?

When I found out that there was going to be a novella, I actually wanted more Anna and TJ, but actually I loved what Tracey Garvis Graves did. With a small snippet of Owen in the first book, it actually made sense to have a small story based on HIS time on the island. But I did love that Anna and TJ were involved within the story too. Loved that we got to see more of them as a couple and their home now – now they are off the island and married and have a family together.

I woke up one morning to my order of this on my kindle and hot damn, was I excited. I raced through it, only putting it down for the 8 hours of work (damn work getting in the way) and picked it back up as soon as I finished. I was entranced by Owen’s story, of how he became, how he just wanted to escape his home life and go somewhere, anywhere where he didn’t have to keep up appearances and be surrounded by people – his family – who just wanted money off of him.  Even his work didn’t appeal to him anymore and so he packed his bag and decided to live on a desolate island. For how long? He didn’t know, nor did he care.

Owen’s story compared to Anna and TJ’s is extremely different. Owen could get off the island anytime he wanted. He was brought supplies every few weeks and he also flew off the island every few weeks just to have some comfort in human communication. With Owen’s story, you can appreciate the island, the beauty of it, and the peace of it. That Owen could get off it any time he wanted to and he did. Whereas with Anna and TJ they were stranded. No one came to get them off, they had to learn to survive and so they didn’t embrace the beauty of it. That was heartbreaking. It would be heartbreaking to hear someone tell you that they could leave, whereas you couldn’t.

I could understand Owens reasoning for wanting to just pack up and leave (I feel the same at times). He just didn’t enjoy his work anymore, he was a dotcom millionaire but the money didn’t exactly mean anything to him. His family always wanted something from him, expected money off him, like he owed it to them. Cutting them off before he went was the right thing to do.

His story really is captivating and when he meets Calia and James and they want to spend time with him on the island, I was so glad of him to have company. The brother and sister were an amazing edition to this book, and Owen’s life, despite the tragic part of the book that occurs. I’m not going to tell you what happens, let’s just say we know who Bones is now.

Uncharted really does fill in that one question we all had from On The Island and I thank you, Tracey for that!

Despite not being a book about Anna and TJ, they still have a few POV’s throughout the novella, just so we can see their reaction to Owen’s story and what they are thinking and feeling about his story and the memories of their time on the island. How different their time was to his. How alone they were, how they had to survive and figure out everything together. But at least they had each other. It was still amazing to see the love they had for each other and there are a few surprises in this book – one was a big one to me but in a way I was proud that it happened because now they can move forward and know they had a choice. You will understand when you read it.

It really is a novella that ties up all the things we wanted to know. It’s a book that ties Owen, TJ and Anna together and shows the different side of the island they all experienced. It leaves Anna and TJ in their perfect family dynamic, loved all, just how they should be and it shows Owen’s life, and how he is happy and in love. Uncharted brings closure to Owen, Tj and Anna’s time on the island and I thank Tracey for writing these, I loved being transported into each other their lives and knowing that despite everything, they all did get that happy ending.

Posted in Romance, Suspense

On The Island – Tracey Garvis-Graves

Synopsis

When thirty-year-old English teacher Anna Emerson is offered a job tutoring T.J. Callahan at his family’s summer rental in the Maldives, she accepts without hesitation; a working vacation on a tropical island trumps the library any day. T.J. Callahan has no desire to leave town, not that anyone asked him. He’s almost seventeen and if having cancer wasn’t bad enough, now he has to spend his first summer in remission with his family – and a stack of overdue assignments – instead of his friends.

Anna and T.J. are en route to join T.J.’s family in the Maldives when the pilot of their seaplane suffers a fatal heart attack and crash-lands in the Indian Ocean. Adrift in shark-infested waters, their life jackets keep them afloat until they make it to the shore of an uninhabited island.

Now Anna and T.J. just want to survive and they must work together to obtain water, food, fire, and shelter. Their basic needs might be met but as the days turn to weeks, and then months, the castaways encounter plenty of other obstacles, including violent tropical storms, the many dangers lurking in the sea, and the possibility that T.J.’s cancer could return. As T.J. celebrates yet another birthday on the island, Anna begins to wonder if the biggest challenge of all might be living with a boy who is gradually becoming a man.

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My Review

I finished this book in about four hours, after being captivated by the story of two people being lost and stranded on an island – I do like the films such as Castaway and Blue Lagoon – the old and new versions, so I knew I would probably become engrossed in this book of survival and friendships.

From the synopsis, you can see that Anna is 30 years old, while T.J is almost 17 has also overcome cancer. During the trails and tribulations of trying to get to the Maldives island T.J’s parents are currently residing in, the pilot of their little plane dies and they are stranded in the shark-infested sea. T.J has to tow Anna to the nearest island without becoming food for the Sharks.

Over the course of the book, they have to band together to get through the days being stranded, hoping that their family will not give up hope in finding them and will have faith they are still alive. As the weeks turn into months and the months into years, their hope is slightly fading, and by now they have made themselves a little home from things around the island, including a pet chicken!

While the fear that T.J’s cancer could return, Anna and T.J both become ill and safe each other over the years. But thats not all thats worrying them both, Anna is now spending time with T.J, who in her eyes is becoming a man.

While they do in fact fall for each other, as it was inevitable since it was only the two of them together every day and night, you become engrossed with both the characters, feeling their every emotions and wishing someone would come along and find them as both of them do not want to die and leave the other on their own.

I must say, i thoroughly enjoyed this book and the ending too. I heard its going to be made into a movie, and if that is true, i literally cannot wait to see the outcome of it.