ARC Book Review: Death Island by Kelsey Ketch

Her family name tainted by her great-grandfather’s crimes of piracy, Meriden Cummings is far from the typical 18th century woman. A social outcast, she works in a carpentry shop in a small village, where the people barely tolerate unconventional behavior.

However, her life takes a turn after a gang of pirates attack her village and her blood reveals an ancient map adorned with Mayan glyphs leading to Death Island. An island legends say is ruled by the Mayan god of the underworld, Ah Puch. Her great-grandfather had sought after the island before he vanished without a trace. Now, Meriden is about to journey across the sea to understand her family history.

There are only a few problems: her growing feelings toward a mysterious stranger linked to her great-grandfather’s past; a greedy band of pirates after her great-grandfather’s legendary treasure; and a contract she has unwittingly signed in blood with Ah Puch himself.


I received this ARC for free from the author in exchange for an honest review.

Holy crap.

This was absolutely an adventure.

I’d read this author’s previous work surrounding Egyptian mythology and I enjoyed it a lot. This book just raised the bar significantly.

When I read this authors previous books, I always felt as if something was missing. It wasn’t bad by any means, but it always felt as if it was just short of being absolutely amazing. I was extremely impressed when I picked up Death Island and found that Kelsey certainly found that something extra to add in.

I loved pretty much everything about this book. The Mayan mythology was fascinating and not something I have ever read before and I’m definitely going to be looking for more books that explore that mythology some more. Every character in the novel were fully believable. Even Skellig. I loved Skellig, he was a fantastic character to add in. Meriden was such a bad-ass and such a lovely character to read from. I also loved the fact that this was dual-pov and it was done very very well. Meriden and Greg’s voices were so different and distinguishable. I always hate reading dual-pov and finding that both characters sound the same.

You could definitely tell that this was a passion project for the author. It was very well researched and everything from the sailing terms to the language used was perfect for the story.

If I would pick out something I didn’t like about this novel it would be that it was so long. Certain spots seem to drag a little more than necessary and I wish it would be condensed a little bit. Also, the sex scenes were slightly awkward, described more scientifically than the feelings that the characters were experiencing, but not everyone is comfortable writing sex scenes so I can’t really blame the awkwardness. Other than that, though, I really can’t say much negative about this.

I would highly recommend this for someone who loves mythology and pirates. If you’re looking for a book that is full of adventure and action, check this out.

Purchase The book here through my Amazon link:
Death Island

Until next time,

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2 thoughts on “ARC Book Review: Death Island by Kelsey Ketch

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