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The Isle of Blood

Review

The Isle of Blood

After spending countless adventures with Dr. Pellinore Warthrop, the famed monstrumologist, young Will Henry is struggling to figure out who the real monsters are. Will has survived face-to-face encounters with Anthropophagi, headless creatures with razor-sharp teeth and a taste for humans. He also nearly has had his heart ripped out from the fabled Wendigo, a creature that wastes away even as it feeds on its prey. At what point, though, do the monsters catch up with the monster hunters?

This time, a mysterious package delivered to Dr. Warthrop proves to be too much to handle. Inside is none other than the pwdre ser, the rot of stars. Created by the mysterious magnificum, the greatest prize in monstrumology, it is a nest formed out of human remains and is poisonous to the touch. No one has ever seen the creature other than a faint shadow on the edge of your vision. The whereabouts of the magnificum are as terrifying as the creature itself. It lives on an island where blood rains from the sky and human remains litter the landscape. For Warthrop, the nest means one thing --- the magnificum has been found, and there is no time to lose.

Warthrop and Will quickly travel to New York City and reunite with Dr. von Helrung to book passage across the ocean. An eager young monstrumologist, Thomas Arkwright, meets them there and gushes over Warthrop. Will isn’t sure what to make of Thomas, but isn’t prepared for what happens next. When it’s time to leave, Warthrop leaves Will behind and takes Thomas with him. This has never happened to Will before, and although his relationship with Warthrop is complicated and confusing, he doesn’t know what to do. Months drag by with no word, and Will is eventually swept up in something he never has had before: a family.

Just as routines are established and the prospect of a different future with a loving family seems evident for Will, Thomas returns --- alone. He claims that the doctor was killed by the magnificumand all hope has been lost. After the initial shock, Will begins to think something is amiss and quickly makes plans to travel to the island himself to seek the truth. Despite the terrors he has witnessed in his life, nothing can prepare him for what awaits on the Isle of Blood.

THE ISLE OF BLOOD is a whole new game in this crazy world author Rick Yancey has created. The complexity of the relationship between Dr. Warthrop and Will Henry reaches new depths, and the outcome is not what you might expect. At some point, all the horror, fear and monsters have to catch up with a person. Yancey explores this very idea through the mind and soul of young Will. The monsters in this book are quite terrifying, for sure, but sometimes the scariest monster is the one that lives within.

This latest addition to the Monstrumologist series left me breathless at times and also quite unsure and scared of what remains in Will’s last journals. Thankfully, Yancey will be able to finish Will’s story in the next and final book in this epic (yes, epic) series.

Reviewed by Benjamin Boche on November 7, 2011

The Isle of Blood
by Rick Yancey

  • Publication Date: September 13, 2011
  • Hardcover: 560 pages
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books For Young Readers
  • ISBN-10: 1416984526
  • ISBN-13: 9781416984528