‘Whisper Island’ – Carissa Ann Lynch

From the outset – and the references to her suggest this was intentional – Whisper Island reminded me of Agatha Christie’s And Then There Were None. The remote island setting, a group thrown together, mysterious deaths and secrets. While it might not have quite lived up to that book, it was definitely a good read.

Our focus is a group of fairly unlikeable friends. We can see immediately that they each have secrets and are using this trip to Whisper Island to escape something. The lack of detail here was necessary, and though it was frustrating to not really get beneath the surface of these characters it was important for the story that we didn’t know too much too soon.

Once the group arrive on this run-down island it’s obvious that this isn’t quite the luxury idyll they had been expecting. The discovery of a skull and then some gruesome deaths had this teetering close to the edge of credible (though this may have been more because of the pacing of the story). The behaviour of the group once they start to get picked off is meant to show their rising fear, but it was rather more reminiscent of every over-the-top horror movie known.

While I didn’t feel that concerned by the events of the book, it was clear that those involved were more affected by things than they initially let on. As with most of these scenarios, things may have been different if people took responsibility for their actions. The story wouldn’t have been as much fun though!

Thanks to NetGalley for allowing me to read this prior to its scheduled February publication. I’m looking forward to recommending this to some of my students.