On the Island

On the Island Summary

In this runaway New York Timesbestseller, a harrowing near-death experience brings together an English teacher and her student as they struggle to survive on a desert island.

Sixteen-year-old T.J. Callahan has no desire to go anywhere. With his cancer in remission, all he wants is to get back to his normal life. But his parents insist that he spend the summer catching up on the school he missed while he was sick.

Anna Emerson is a thirty-year-old English teacher who has been worn down by the cold Chicago winters and a relationship that’s going nowhere. To break up the monotony of everyday life, she jumps at the chance to spend the summer on a tropical island tutoring T.J.

Anna and T.J. board a private plane headed to the Callahans’ summer home, but as they fly over the Maldives’ twelve hundred islands, the unthinkable happens: their plane crashes in shark-infested waters. They make it to shore, but soon discover they’re stranded on an uninhabited island.

At first, their only thought is survival. But as the days turn to weeks, and then months, and as birthdays pass, the castaways must brave violent tropical storms, the many dangers lurking in the sea, and the worst threat of all—the possibility that T.J.’s cancer could return. With only each other for love and support, these two lost souls must come to terms with their situation and find compaionship in one another in the moments they need it most.

Book Reviews

Redheaded Robin

Really a good read!5 star

The story of TJ and Anna, starts out a bit truly unbelievable! Aka ‘stranded on a deserted island in the Maldives after a serious seaplane crash where the pilot dies of a heart attack, causing the crash. Then, the plot takes off. It is truly a story about characters, people, with complex issues, and no quick solutions. Being stranded on a desert isle for over 3 years seems so implausible in today’s overly communicative world, but becomes the beginning of two lives. Though TJ and Anna are separated by 13 years of age, Ms Gravis carefully, and with a true understanding of human traits, brings us slowly but surely to realize age is just a number, that real respect and admiration for someone, is not a relationship obstacle that cannot be overcome. A really good plot buildup, real, palpable tension on island living survival, some great and not so great surprises, lots of story twists, and yet a happy ending. Yeah!55


Can’t put it down5 star

This was a compelling story right from the first chapter. Tears, joys, terrors and adventure. I loved how everything was woven together. They didn’t have all the answers, but still made smart decisions and survived, which in itself was a miracle. Thank you for writing such a beautiful story.55


Simple but fun4 star

It’s not a literary marvel, just a simple breezy beach read, but it’s fun and interesting!45


It surprised me5 star

The first 100 or so I was thinking there was no way this turns into a viable romance but I was wrong and pleasantly surprised. It’s a book that will stick out in my mind for a long time.55


😍😍😍5 star

I absolutely loved this book! It was definitely a page turner, I read it in 2 days! I absolutely recommend!55


Amazing!5 star

I finished this book in one day. I couldn’t put it down! A must read!55


On the Island5 star

Whenever you think the story is getting dull, all of the sudden you’re taken through another adventure! 10/10 would recommend. Does not disappoint whatsoever.55

Kate the mystery reader

Island5 star

I read this in one day couldn’t wait to see what was going to happen next. Very riveting story, loved it55

Reader Mom 2

Perfect Summer Read5 star

This book is a perfect summer read. I didn't really want to put it down. I thought the author did a great job portraying the romance between unlikely characters.55


On the Island5 star

I've never read a book so fast. I enjoyed every moment of it. I wish there was a series. I wish it didn't end.55

Other Books by Tracey Garvis Graves

The Girl He Used to Know


The Girl He Used to Know
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