Book Review: The Secrets of Islayne

cover-the secrets of islayneTitle: The Secrets of Islayne

Author: Kari Lynn West

Genre: Young Adult, Mystery, Fantasy

Rating: 1 Star



A powerful island. A dangerous mystery. An impossible choice.

For centuries, the island of Islayne has given certain residents the ability to revive other people’s memories. These gifted individuals are known as luminators, and sixteen-year-old Ronan Saunders desperately desires to join their illustrious ranks. As he struggles against the prejudice of the old, powerful families who have an iron grip on the trade, Ronan falls under the tutelage of a reclusive luminator, rumored to be insane.

Just when his long-desired future is within reach, Ronan and his three friends discover a deadly secret on the island. As they delve deeper into the mystery, what they find forces them to question their loyalties, doubt long-held beliefs, and wrestle with the dire consequences of revealing the truth. Ronan finds himself torn between everything he loves and the only future he’s ever wanted. The entire fate of the lumination trade hangs in the balance of his decision.


To be honest, The Secrets of Islayne by Lynn West under any other circumstances would have warranted 3 stars from me instead of 1. The writing was clear and concise, the characters were well portrayed, and I was interested in the world-building and plot.

But after the first few chapters, I DNF’d the book. The writing was dry – it lacked flow and poetry. The style was so concise that it bordered on abrupt at times, and I grew bored. I wasn’t sucked into the story like I wanted to be.

Was the book bad? No. I could have pressed on had I nothing better to do, but why force myself? I think for a younger reader, this book may be excellent – it just wasn’t for me.