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 30 Day Book Challenge, Colleen Hoover, Jade C. Jamison

Day 11 – Favorite pairing

Okay, so I can’t pick JUST one pairing. I love waaay too many to narrow it down, so just bare with me while i begin to tell you who i love.

1. Blake and Livia  from Poughkeepsie by Debra Anatasia.

Throughout everything that happened in this beautiful book, Blake and Livia fought through it. Whether it was the stigma attached to homeless people and talking to them/falling in love. From ex-boyfriends who wanted revenge for being dumped for a homeless guy, to murders and attempted murder. Throughout it all, these two knew they were meant to be and do anything to protect each other. And despite it all, they did get their happily ever after.

Poughkeepsie is about finding love and protecting those you love and Blake and Livia definitely deserved one another.

2.  Holder and Sky from Hopeless by Colleen Hoover.

I cant say too much about their storyline in fear of spilling what happens in the book. Their relationship started off rocky but eventually it blossomed into love. You will see the journey they take and understand why i cant say anything about it, because it will ruin the book but their love is pure for one another, it always will be because they have found the person they have been searching for, for so many years. Although there are things that test them, they never falter in their love for one another, knowing that together, they can get past anything that is thrown their way, as long as they have each other by their sides.

3. Andrew and Camryn from The Edge of Never by J.A Redmerski

During this challenge, I have badgered on about TEoN and how utterly amazing it is. Well I LOVE Andrew and Camryn. They are easily one of my favourite couples. They were both lost, not knowing which way to take, taking a journey alone across the country but then they met one another and Andrew took Camryn on a road trip – a discovery into making every moment count. He helped her discover her sexuality, helped her discover who she truly was and in turn, they fall in love with one another slowly, afraid to admit it due to their pasts. For those who have read this book, you will know they were two souls who were meant to meet, meant to be together. As Andrew said:

“For the first time in my life, I’ve felt whole, alive, free. You were the missing piece of my soul, the breath in my lungs, the blood in my veins. I think that if past lives are real then we have been lovers in every single one of them. I’ve known you for a short time, but I feel like I’ve known you forever.”

4. Anna and T.J from On The Island by Tracey Garvis-Graves

Anna and T.J’s relationship was kind of inevitable. If you are stranded on a desert island for years, with just the two of you, then of course, you’re going to fall in love. But its not just the fact they are on a desert island, Anna is 30 and TJ is 17. Anna, although she is starting to see TJ in a different light as they spend year after year together, she knows she cant do anything about it. She’s worried about the age gap but its TJ who pursues her, who woos her and doesn’t care about the gap. I just loved how their friendship changed into love and into a relationship as it was only the two of them, trying to make a ‘home’ on this island.  They truly love each other and as a reader, you’re sat wishing someone would come along and find them as both of them do not want to die and leave the other on their own.

5. Erin and Riley from Everything But by Jade C. JamisonT

I love this book. Seriously!! and i love this couple too. Erin and Riley are both afraid of love due to their pasts but they both cant seem to stay away from one another during the week that Rockstar Riley is in town. Spending the short time together, they both begin to feel something for the other, completely new and scary territory for the both of them as they don’t want it to end up like their previous relationships. They tackle some major issues during the days they spend together  and get to know one another, which makes them fall that little bit more for each other. They push past everything that had happened throughout the week, to finally finding that they can’t be without each other, no matter what is put in their path to stop them.

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.