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I don’t know if it’s the cooler weather or the banter of small children but I crave adventure in a real, is-this-really-my-life kinda way. If you’re like me and just need a fast escape, Gray Wolf Island by Tracey Neithercott is the perfect treasure hunt woven with introspect, friendship and murder.
A contemporary YA adventure, Gray Wolf Island is a grown up version of The Goonies. Sorta like if a young hot Josh Brolin found a treasure map
instead of a hobbit.
The story begins with identical twins, one dying of terminal cancer and the other living in her sister’s shadow. With maybe a week left to live, Sadie makes her sister, Ruby, promise she’ll search for the legendary treasure hidden on the nearby island. Not prone to adventure, Ruby lies and says she will, knowing it’s the one thing Sadie wishes she could do. In a horrid coughing fit, Sadie makes one last impossible request. She asks Ruby to kill her out of mercy and end her pain. Ruby is torn. Could you, would you do it?
A year after her sister’s death, Ruby finds a poem in a copy of Treasure’s Island at the Museum. The poem is a map leading to the lost treasure on Gray Wolf Island. Ruby reluctantly decides to fulfill her sister’s wish. She begrudgingly allows Elliot, the resident badass and Gray Wolf Island expert, to join her. But Elliot is a package deal, bringing his two friends, gorgeous Gabe and doomed thrill-seeker Charlie, and their insomniac boat driver Anne. The five teens set off across Gray Wolf Island in search of the treasure as well as who they are inside.
The narrative switches between two perspectives in different timelines. The two storylines weave and intersect in a magically delicious way. The book follows Ruby in her quest to fulfill her sister’s dying wish and a boy who wakes up with amnesia on Gray Wolf Island before Sadie dies. I love way the different storylines intersect and give depth to the island and the characters.
I love all the characters. Tracey Neithercott not only creates unique, breathing characters, but she develops each one so that they all grow and change in a real and introspective way. Developing six different arcs is a harrowing feat, and she does it well. Skills.
Not just an adventure, Gray Wolf Island is a powerful book of friendship, truth and forgiveness. The book explores the need for friendship, the importance of truth and the freedom of forgiveness. You’ll be a better person for reading this book.
This is the perfect book to take on a hike or to snuggle under a cozy blanket on your favorite leather couch. Gray Wolf Island just came out on October 10, 2017.
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