219 p. Graphix/ Scholastic, August, 2011. 978-0-545-31480-0. (Chosen to review for NJ Youth Services.)
Two seemingly disconnected stories are at play in this suspenseful yet humorous adventure. Long ago and far away, there is war between these giant machine-like creatures who house and protect these tiny block-headed people-like creatures who used to be enslaved by the invaders, who look like spiked, warped ETs.
The present-day story features a family about to embark on a fishing trip. The only person who is actually looking forward to the trip is Dad. Mom is resentful and preoccupied with the hydration of the plants in her greenhouse, teen son is too cool for family vacays and lobbies to stay home and tween daughter wants her pet snake to come along. Four happy people on a boat.
A monster storm hits them and they are shipwrecked on an uncharted island, where eerie strange thing happen. The entire island seems to be watching them.
Vibrant colors dominate and punctuate even the darkest scenes. There are a lot of wordless panels which propel the story with a breathless energy. If the creepy cover doesn't already sell this, it won't be long before readers are totally drawn into this Indiana Jones meets Lost meets Journey to the Center of the Earth mash-up.