Never Coming Home by Kate Williams

Disclaimer: I received this e-arc from the author. Thanks! All opinions are my own.

Book: Never Coming Home

Author: Kate Williams

Book Series: Standalone

Rating: 4/5

Diversity: Queer Character

Recommended For…: young adult readers, thriller, mystery, abandoned, island vacation

Publication Date: June 21, 2022

Genre: YA Thriller Mystery

Age Relevance: 13+ (homophobia comments, gore, violence, death, suicide, drugs, cursing, racism, attempted animal murder)

Explanation of Above: There are some small and brief homophobic comments said in a flashback scene. There is some gore, including vomit and blood, death and murder, and violence, including allergy attacks and stabbings. There is suicide briefly mentioned in the book and vaguely shown. There is some drug abuse and drug use mentioned briefly in the book. There is some cursing in the book. Flashbacks including some racism are mentioned and one scene of an attempted animal murder is shown, but the dog is not harmed.

Publisher: Delacorte Press

Pages: 320

Synopsis: Everyone knows Unknown Island—it’s the world’s most exclusive destination. Think white sand beaches, turquoise seas, and luxury accommodations. Plus, it’s invite only, no one over twenty-one allowed, and it’s absolutely free. Who wouldn’t want to go?

After launching with a showstopping viral marketing campaign, the whole world is watching as the mysterious resort opens its doors to the First Ten, the ten elite influencers specifically chosen to be the first to experience everything Unknown Island has to offer. You know them. There’s the gamer, the beauty blogger, the rich girl, the superstar, the junior politician, the environmentalist, the DJ, the CEO, the chef, and the athlete.

What they don’t know is that they weren’t invited to Unknown Island for their following—they were invited for their secrets. Everyone is hiding a deadly one, and it looks like someone’s decided it’s payback time. Unknown Island isn’t a vacation, it’s a trap. And it’s beginning to look like the First Ten—no matter how influential—are never coming home.

Review: For the most part I enjoyed this read a lot! The book gave me creepypasta/Abandoned by Disney vibes combined with Clue vibes and I liked how all of the characters were not totally likeable at all. The characters ranged in their likability, which makes it hard to figure out the true murderer cause they’re all suspicious. I liked the character development of each character and I liked how it changed POVs often. I also liked the world building and thought it was a very creepy and atmospheric read.

However, I did think that the format of the book was a bit confusing to get into. The book follows 8 POVs and it makes it hard to keep them straight in the beginning. The POV also changes mid chapter, which is also confusing. The plot took a bit to get off the ground as well.

Verdict: I loved it! Definitely recommend.