**NOTE: This is a companion novella to On The Island. On The Island should be read before reading Uncharted.
Reviewed by Jenny & Gitte
Gitte: I was so excited to read Uncharted and get some answers to the secrets ‘The Island’ held…like a jigsaw puzzle, by the end I felt satisfied that we had reached the end and gotten full closure. We needed this book and it didn’t disappoint.
This story is mainly about Owen, the previous ‘tenant’ of the Island. Owen’s at a cross roads in his life, at such a young age, and needs to cut all ties and spend some time with himself to clear his head and his heart of all the ‘rubbish’ that comes from life. Albeit it a charmed and successful life, what really matters, has gotten lost along the way and Owen wants to set things right. Owen wants to get away from everything and everyone so where better than a deserted island?!
Owen wants to be reminded that: “When you have nothing, everything feels like something.” He decides that being on his own on unblemished land is the perfect life for him.
“I guess I’ll stay here until I have a good enough reason to go someplace else.”
Owen is an integral player of a history shared with T.J and Anna. Owen feels enormous guilt and he needs to go visit them to apologise and explain. It is through this gesture that we find out exactly who ‘bones’ is and what really happened before they came to be there.
The diary entries and the story telling is captivating. We hear a story of solitude, love and tragedy which deeply impacted the rescue of T.J and Anna albeit unbeknownst and unintentional.
“I hope you are here to un-break my heart…I’ve been waiting so long for you to come and find me.”
The lives of Owen, T.J and Anna really is entwined and a past event sparked a consequence of heart-breaking isolation and despair.
“We’ve gone down the ‘if – only road’ and we decided a long time ago that there was no sense in dwelling on things we couldn’t change.”
Uncharted is Owen’s story first and foremost yet we do get to hear from T.J and Anna and get a glimpse into what their life is like now. I have loved them since reading The Island so I devoured every word by this brilliant Author. And Owen….what a man, I completely felt for him, admired him and understood him. This fab novella brought me as much closure as it did the characters.
“….There’s nothing I love more than a good happy ending.”
What did you think Jenny?
Jenny : Gitte, I too was thrilled when I heard Tracey Garvis-Graves was writing this book. I wasn’t sure what to expect and to be honest I was perfectly happy with where we left T.J. and Ann in “On the Island” and content to leave them to live their lives so I was very intrigued to see where this book would take us.
I’m so happy we were treated to an “extension” of OTI, a different story if you like, and listening to Owen recant his story was like taking a trip back in time to the Island with him. Uncharted fulfilled its promise to me to fill in the missing pieces and Owen answered those niggling questions that were present in OTI. I was always a little inquisitive as to just who and how had those bones been left, and exactly what the story was behind them.
“You’d be surprised what people can do when they have no other choice….”
I really did enjoy Uncharted because it offered me something new. Whilst Owen’s life did indeed intertwine with T.J. and Anna’s, it was learning the story behind the mystery that had me completely absorbed in Owen’s tale. Not to mention that I was overjoyed that I also got to catch up with two of my favourite characters again, even if it was in little snippets, to know that they were all okay and happy.
“The man sitting next to me on this couch is my equal, my confidant. The love of my life. He is strong in every sense of the word.”
The story Owen weaves is as sad as it is beautiful, it’s heart-breaking and moving and Uncharted is a must for every fan of On The Island. It really is a companion novella in every sense of the word. Revisiting these characters felt so special. Hearing Owen’s story entranced me and only heightened the wonderful feelings I had experienced whilst reading On The Island over a year ago. Uncharted served to remind me of why On The Island still remains one of my favourite books to this day and why I simply adore this author’s work.
“Then what happened?” “Then I kissed her like my life depended on it.”
Arc supplied by publisher in exchange for an honest review.