Once within a song, a music lover and a broken man fell from the sky. It changed their lives forever…
I’m a huge fan of survival romances but they don’t come around too often so when I heard about this one, I couldn’t resist diving in especially after reading the blurb. The heroine and hero are strangers thrown together when they crash on a desert island forcing them to rely on each other for survival… and face the hidden desire they feel for each other!! And the whole concept of these unseen messages fascinated me. These little occurrences that could so easily be dismissed as nonsense, that had no factual basis in reality, and yet were still there regardless of whether you ignored or heeded them were so interesting. Fate, chance, coincidence, luck… no matter what you call it or what you believe in, these elements are definitely something that makes you wonder…
“There is a message for everything. From handwritten to verbal, seen and unseen. Messages exist all around us.”
But what if you don’t see?
What if you don’t understand?
What if, by ignoring the message, your life is never the same again?
Estelle Evermore morphed from nobody to somebody overnight.
Galloway Oak put his past behind him and endeavoured to make his fortune using his trade.
Multiple unseen messages.
From sky to island, they find neither fame nor skills can save them. Stripped from society and left alone to survive the elements, the very task of staying alive outweighs all other needs.
Until survival turns to desire.
And desire turns to danger.
In those beginning scenes in the airport as the many unseen messages passed her by, I got chills and goosebumps as I read. I think your subconscious is aware of things that, while perhaps irrational by our usual standards, may not necessarily always be wrong. But the more logical, educated sides of our minds are tought and conditioned to ignore it. When you get a bad feeling about “I don’t think I should get on this plane”, how many people would actually turn around, sacrificing their airfare and plans to actually not take the flight if there was no factual basis for them not to? Most often we’re likely to dismiss these fears.
There were all these signs warning her not to get on the plane. It was like a hum on the air. You could feel it but not see it. You could easily ignore it, but if you were listening, they were clearly there.
There was so much foreshadowing and mystery that pulled me into the story. I loved that Estelle and Galloway shared this instant connection the moment that they glanced at each other across the airport. In real life, how many people would share that glance but then just move forward with life in separate directions? How many people would follow through to try to get to know that person?
Ahh there were so many things to wonder about!
I didn’t listen, but it doesn’t mean I didn’t live. I lived and breathed and cried and laughed and exited in a totally different tale than the other I’d envisioned. Away from my home. Away from my family. Away from everything comfortable and familiar.
But I wasn’t alone… I was with him.
A stranger turned lover. An enemy turned friend.
I was with him.
And he became my entire universe.
Then came the crash. That terrifying uncertainty between life and death. And then the horrifying realization that even though they were alive, they were completely cut off from the world.
No ambulance to rescue them.
No doctor to heal them.
No internet to research help.
No reception to call anyone.
No food to eat.
No fresh water.
No clothing to protect against the elements.
Except each other.
Every step of their journey as they fought to survive on this isolated desert island fascinated me. How terrifying must it be to be wounded, alone, starving, and cutoff from the world. How would they find food on an uninhabited island, there were plenty of fish, but how could they catch them? How would they get water with no rivers? How would they build shelter with no tools?
Galloway was grouchy, gorgeous, mysterious, and clearly hiding something. Estelle adapted quickly to their situation and her strength of character was admirable in regards to their survival. And even though they tried to fight it, they were undeniably drawn to each other — and had been since that moment in the airport — so it was only a matter of time before a relationship between them began.
This is an incredibly long book — over 700 pages — and it took me two sittings to read it. I really loved the first half of the book, but in the interest of full honesty, I was a little more frustrated with the second half. There was a lot of miscommunication and very poor judgment causing the majority of the drama. While I was rooting for their romance, I also was very frustrated with the way both of them (but more so Estelle) handled many things. And there were other non-relationship decisions that they all made that just didn’t add up to me and could very well have saved their lives earlier if they’d acted differently.
Regardless, I really quite enjoyed this book and especially appreciated how different it was than the usual type of book I read. It was quite an adventure and the way the story was set up with the unseen messages, and them trying desperately to survive on the desert island was captivating! In terms of rating, I have to split the way I look at it. I’d ideally rate the first half of the book 4.5 stars, and the second half 3.5 stars. If you round that out, you get a final rating of 4 stars although I do find this book difficult to rate as a whole as opposed to in sections. I’ve read a few survival stories over the years mostly because I just can’t resist these types of books — On The Island (my all-time favorite), Surviving Raine, Withering Hope — and I don’t regret reading this one at all. It was a welcome chance of pace and an entertaining story to get lost in.
And can we just take a minute to admire how gorgeous the cover is?? I love it and am about to order myself a paperback copy. Since it’s over 700 pages, it should be a very satisfying book to hold in person!
Rating: 4 stars. Standalone