Frenzy Island by Richard E.Rock
I really didn't read science fiction until I had the opportunity to read To Dream (Anatomy of a Humachine by Louis K. Lowy and realised what I had been missing! So, when I had the opportunity to read an early copy of Frenzy Island by the bestselling Welsh author, Richard E. Rock, I jumped at the chance and was not disappointed.
"The boat hit shore at 09:27 EAT. We can be exact on this because it was picked up by the perimeter cameras. It was an old open lifeboat, navy blue, and we counted seven people on board. Eight if you want to include the baby. Most of them didn't survive more than ten minutes."
Two sisters and a baby, shipwrecked refugees, wash up on a mysterious east African Island crawling with giant, blue-skinned savages. They flee to an abandoned scientific facility where incredible and terrifying experiments have been taking place, experiments that could change the course of human history. Meanwhile, the only person who can save them is a lowly monitoring station employee half a world away in Arizona - but the clock is ticking, and the universe is about to come calling.
One of the things I look for in any book are characters that are believable and that I can empathise with. I found this first in Cynthia who liked to impress people by telling them she worked at Space Wurd spaceport without revealing that her job was so mindnumbingly dull that she spent all her time listening to rock music.Little does she know, that she is to become the saviour in the story.
I also empathised to the hilt with Godriva and Esperence and their determination to save themselves and baby Buki. The characters are so realistic, and the tension is built so consistently and credibly that I found the story completely gripping. I was right there with the characters throughout the book.
I never insult an author by putting spoilers into my reviews, suffice to say that the incessant media coverage of the problems, the scapegoat blamed and an multimillionaire spaceport owner were all a little too close to the nub for me to feel comfortable with!
If you enjoy tightly written, gripping fiction and want to read something completely different, I highly recommend Frenzy Island by Richard E Rock. This would also make an excellent read for a book group as there are so many modern day parallels to discuss. I thoroughly enjoyed this book and hope you will too.
Richard E. Rock is a headbanging, cat-loving author who dreams then writes about the dark, the mysterious and the fantastical.
His first novel Deep Level was published by Darkstroke Books in 2020. His second opus Frenzy Island is published by Cranthorpe Millner.
His interests include Russian prison literature, Norwegian Black Metal and Scooby Doo. He lives in south Wales with his girlfriend and their cat.