Blog Tour Review: Never Coming Home by Kate Williams

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Ten influencers stranded on and island where they’re getting picked off one-by-one; who will survive?

Thank you so much to TBR and Beyond Tours and Kate Williams for allowing me to be part of this experience and also providing me with a complimentary eARC and media kit!

Book Information

Genre: Young Adult Thriller
Publishing Date: June 21, 2022

The beach read you have been dying for! When ten of America’s hottest teenage influencers are invited to an exclusive island resort, things are sure to get wild. But murder isn’t what anyone expected. Will anyone survive?

Everyone knows Unknown Island—it’s the world’s most exclusive destination. Think white sand beaches, turquoise seas, and luxury accommodations. Plus, it’s invite only, no one over twenty-one allowed, and it’s absolutely free. Who wouldn’t want to go?

After launching with a showstopping viral marketing campaign, the whole world is watching as the mysterious resort opens its doors to the First Ten, the ten elite influencers specifically chosen to be the first to experience everything Unknown Island has to offer. You know them. There’s the gamer, the beauty blogger, the rich girl, the superstar, the junior politician, the environmentalist, the DJ, the CEO, the chef, and the athlete.

What they don’t know is that they weren’t invited to Unknown Island for their following—they were invited for their secrets. Everyone is hiding a deadly one, and it looks like someone’s decided it’s payback time. Unknown Island isn’t a vacation, it’s a trap. And it’s beginning to look like the First Ten—no matter how influential—are never coming home.

Content and Trigger Warnings

For a list of warnings, tropes, and representation for this book, check out its page on BookTriggerWarnings.com.

About the Author

Kate Williams has written for Seventeen, NYLON, Cosmopolitan, Bustle, Vans, Calvin Klein, Urban Outfitters, and many other brands and magazines. She is the author of The Babysitters Coven trilogy: The Babysitters CovenFor Better or Cursed, and Spells Like Teen Spirit. Kate lives in Kansas. To learn more about her and her books, go to heykatewilliams.com or follow @heykatewilliams on Instagram.

Author Links:

Review (no spoilers)

If you’d like to follow along with the rest of the tour, you can find the tour schedule here.

Hello everyone! Long time no see! I knew my posting streak wasn’t going to last long lol.

Today I have a review for a book that some reviewers are calling an And Then There Were None retelling. I’ve never read that book, so I have no idea how accurate that statement is, but if you’re interested in locked-room thrillers in which a group of people are isolated and slowly picked off one-by-one, then boy do I have the book for you.

Never Coming Home is another interesting new take on the social-media/influencer generation. This is not the first YA thriller I’ve read with influencer protagonists and a part of me is wondering if this is going to be the new trend in books about celebrities. We currently live in a society where hobbies basically no longer exist because there’s so much external pressure to monetize everything we enjoy doing. I think authors are trying to warn YA readers of this dangerous tendency with these types of books. I can’t even imagine what the younger teen generation is going through with how much their developmental years are constantly being recorded and put online for clicks.

The novel follows ten influencers who are invited to a remote island (called Unknown Island) for a promotional event. However, they quickly realize that something is horribly wrong when they are all accused of murder and begin dying off one-by-one. I’m a huge fan of these types of thriller novels/movies where you have to figure out who is lying and who is telling the truth. They always make me want to create my very own murder board to write down all of the clues and backstories.

While the premise and story is extremely hooking, there were a few things that I thought could have been executed a bit better. The story is told in 3rd person, but switches POVs often. Because the entire novel is only 10 chapters long, each chapter switches POVs multiple times and is fairly lengthy. I’m personally not a fan of long chapters and with how many different POVs there are crammed into each one, it made it difficult to keep track of the characters. This is probably one of those novels where I would recommend keeping a personal list of everyone introduced because it can be easily to lose track of who is who. Of course, it gets easier as more and more people die off.

Additionally, anytime the author wanted the characters to come together as one big group, she made one of the women scream really loudly to get everyone’s attention. This made sense whenever a body was found, but these characters were screaming about literally anything. A new (totally normal non-gory) Instagram photo would be posted to the Unknown Island account and someone would let out a huge scream immediately instead of just, like, calling everyone to come over and look at it.

Lastly, the ending was probably my least favorite part. For a book that did such a good job at keeping the action going throughout, the final chapter was just a huge info dump to explain what happened. It was probably the most boring chapter in the entire book despite being the point where readers are finally about to uncover who is behind everything.

Overall, I would definitely recommend this book to anyone who loves whodunit thriller/mystery novels and is okay with a lot of murder (I love murder in novels so the large body count was 100% down my alley). There were a few parts where I thought things could have been done better, but I also know a lot of readers thoroughly enjoyed every part of it. I’d honestly love to see a film adaptation of this because I think it would work really well on-screen. Be sure to check out the other reviews on this tour to see what others are saying!

2 thoughts on “Blog Tour Review: Never Coming Home by Kate Williams

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