The Islands at the End of the World (Islands at the End of the World #1)

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The Islands at the End of the World (Islands at the End of the World #1)
Author(s)
Age Range
11+
Release Date
August 05, 2014
ISBN
978-0385744027
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In this fast-paced survival story set in Hawaii, electronics fail worldwide, the islands become completely isolated, and a strange starscape fills the sky. Leilani and her father embark on a nightmare odyssey from Oahu to their home on the Big Island. Leilani’s epilepsy holds a clue to the disaster, if only they can survive as the islands revert to earlier ways. A powerful story enriched by fascinating elements of Hawaiian ecology, culture, and warfare, this captivating and dramatic debut from Austin Aslan is the first of two novels. The author has a master’s degree in tropical conservation biology from the University of Hawaii at Hilo.

Editor review

1 review
A blockbuster film in the making.
Overall rating
 
4.7
Plot
 
5.0
Characters
 
5.0
Writing Style
 
4.0
This is a spectacular book. It is action-packed, thrilling, mystical, and will keep you guessing until the end. The plot is well-written and perfectly paced. The dialogue is unique to the locale and really authentic. The use of Hawaiian myths and folklore in the plot is simply outstanding. Aslan really knows his stuff.

The characters are complex and interesting, especially Leilani, the protagonist. She is half-white and half-Hawaiian, but she identifies strongly with her Hawaiian heritage. Lei is also an epileptic, and if she misses her medication or ingests too much aspartame she will have violent seizures. It was really amazing meeting a character as diverse as Leilani!

There are a couple of things that may turn some readers away from the book: there is no romance, no love triangle, no love interest at all; the frequent use of the native Hawaiian language. Frankly, I loved both of these things. It was extremely refreshing to not have a main character whose thoughts were all about the love interest.

The well-integrated use of the Hawaiian language and folklore was also so interesting. I am a lover of languages, and while I found it hard to determine the meaning of some words from context clues, it just made me feel even more immersed in the story.

Aslan's debut is a blockbuster film in the making. Fans of The Hunger Games, The Maze Runner, and sci-fi novels like Lynne Matson's Nil and Jessica Khoury's Origin will love this book.
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