Author: Leslie Lutz
Publication Date: 05 May 2020
Genre: YA Horror/Supernatural Thriller
Lost meets Stranger Things in this eerie, immersive YA thriller, thrusting seventeen-year-old Sia into a reality where the waters in front of her and the jungle behind her are as dangerous as the survivors alongside her.
Sia practically grew up in the water scuba diving, and wreck dives are run of the mill. Take the tourists out. Explore the reef. Uncover the secrets locked in the sunken craft. But this time … the dive goes terribly wrong.
Attacked by a mysterious creature, Sia’s boat is sunk, her customers are killed, and she washes up on a deserted island with no sign of rescue in sight. Waiting in the water is a seemingly unstoppable monster that is still hungry. In the jungle just off the beach are dangers best left untested. When Sia reunites with a handful of survivors, she sees it as the first sign of light.
Sia is wrong.
Between the gulf of deadly seawater in front of her and suffocating depth of the jungle behind her, even the island isn’t what it seems.
Haunted by her own mistakes and an inescapable dread, Sia’s best hope for finding answers may rest in the center of the island, at the bottom of a flooded sinkhole that only she has the skills to navigate. But even if the creature lurking in the depths doesn’t swallow her and the other survivors, the secrets of their fractured reality on the island might.
So, I’m going to start this review by saying that if you are claustrophobic, this book will not be for you. The author describes several diving scenes with close quarters and loss of oxygen. Alright, y’all were warned. Onto the good stuff.
At only seventeen years old, Sia is already an expert diver. This isn’t surprising because Sia helps her mother lead tourist dives in order to help make ends meet for their family since her father isn’t around.
What should have been a typical tourist dive goes terribly wrong when a creature attacks the ship, killing the customers, and leaving Sia shipwrecked on a remote island. Sia learns that something sinister is at play on this island, and she must find a way to survive both the sea monster and deadly island.
This story is told as diary entries from Sia to her father, which allows for a more in depth inner monologue of Sia, which I really appreciated. I thought all of the main characters in this story were well developed and added interesting layers of complexity to the story; even when they were really unlikable. I don’t want to disclose who the survivors are though because spoilers.
The author does a phenomenal job of creating a truly atmospheric and immersive reading experience. When Sia has to do several life threatening dives, I swear I was hyperventilating for her as the air was running low in her compression tanks as well as what was lurking in the waters. There were definitely some gasping moments for me.
From start to finish, the plot maintained a fast pace and was engrossing. I found myself tearing through the pages. There were so many twists, turns, and WTF moments. I definitely recommend reading this one!
Thank you to Kaye Publicity for providing a review copy. This did not influence my review. All opinions are my own.