Thursday, August 18, 2011

Book Review- The Other Side of the Island

(From Goodreads) Honor and her parents have been reassigned to live on Island 365 in the Tranquil Sea. Life is peaceful there—the color of the sky is regulated by Earth Mother, a corporation that controls New Weather, and it almost never rains. Everyone fits into their rightful and predictable place. . . .

Except Honor. She doesn’t fit in, but then she meets Helix, a boy with a big heart and a keen sense for the world around them. Slowly, Honor and Helix begin to uncover a terrible truth about life on the Island: Sooner or later, those who are unpredictable disappear . . . and they don’t ever come back.

I really really liked this book. Although I say its more for tweens than it is for older kids. I'm starting to think that my library mixes younger kid books with ones for older kids...

Anyways, I thought that the idea of this book was cool and how she took the Lord's Prayer, and things like the pledge of alligence and rewrote them for her book. I also enjoyed the characters and I thought that they were all very real.
 The concept of having a world destroyed by floods has been done before. Although  the way everything was done reminded me of another story. I can't think of it but the way there were the lesser people who cleaned up everything for the people makes me think of that one story. 

I thought that the writing was good and from the first page I was drawn into the story. The plot was engaging and I couldn't not read it. I wanted to finish it so much, that I finished it in a night and then finished it before I was done with Wings. I enjoyed how Honor slowly what was wrong with her society and how Honor's parents refused to conform to the rest of society. 

The characters were all very good too. Although I didn't really like Honor's parents or Helix's. I did like how the kids were named with the same letter in the year they were born. And Honor's little brother's name was very long for me. I thought that he could have been given a nickname instead of spelling out the whole name. When Honor decided that she had to conform to protect her parents, I felt that in a way it was brave of her. She felt guilty when her parents got taken because she thought that it was her fault. 

Although I think that it was interesting how Goodman changed things, I wonder if the "Earth Mother" is actually alive or if she's dead. Was she even real? And what time does the story take place in? The story only says that it is in the eight year since the world went to the Earth Mother's plan, but there is no certain year that I could find. 

While the book did end with some things left unanswered I thought that it's still a good ending for this book and sometimes its good to wonder about things. It makes us think and imagine. I enjoyed the last line and I hope that the story does actually have a happy ending even though I'm afraid we'll never know. The story I think, makes us think about environmental issues  and about the government of course. Maybe even about that we're being told on the internet and what the media tells us. 

Overall it was a good story and I enjoyed reading it. I would recommend it although I do think it's more of a younger teen's book. But older teens and adults too could enjoy this book. 

On Goodreads: The Other Side of the Island

So, what do you think about books where the author doesn't finish the story? Do you think authors should finish stories or leave them to our imagination.


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