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On the Island

Narrated by: Heidi Baker
Length: 7 hrs and 2 mins
4 out of 5 stars (1,006 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

When 30-year-old English teacher Anna Emerson is offered a job tutoring T.J. Callahan at his family's summer rental in the Maldives, she accepts without hesitation; a working vacation on a tropical island trumps the library any day.

T.J. Callahan has no desire to leave town, not that anyone asked him. He's almost 17 and if having cancer wasn't bad enough, now he has to spend his first summer in remission with his family - and a stack of overdue assignments - instead of his friends.

Anna and T.J. are en route to join T.J.'s family in the Maldives when the pilot of their seaplane suffers a fatal heart attack and crash-lands in the Indian Ocean. Adrift in shark-infested waters, their life jackets keep them afloat until they make it to the shore of an uninhabited island. Now Anna and T.J. just want to survive and they must work together to obtain water, food, fire, and shelter.

Their basic needs might be met but as the days turn to weeks, and then months, the castaways encounter plenty of other obstacles, including violent tropical storms, the many dangers lurking in the sea, and the possibility that T.J.'s cancer could return.

As T.J. celebrates yet another birthday on the island, Anna begins to wonder if the biggest challenge of all might be living with a boy who is gradually becoming a man.

©2011 Tracey Garvis-Graves (P)2012 Tracey Garvis-Graves

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    434
  • 4 Stars
    324
  • 3 Stars
    179
  • 2 Stars
    47
  • 1 Stars
    22

Performance

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    350
  • 4 Stars
    281
  • 3 Stars
    155
  • 2 Stars
    86
  • 1 Stars
    48

Story

  • 4 out of 5 stars
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    447
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    265
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    139
  • 2 Stars
    47
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    22
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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Loved this book!

I absolutely loved this book and the narrator. I listened to this book in 1 day, I was completely drawn in by the story. You will fall in love with the characters and find yourself rooting for them. The narrator was great, I listen to a lot of audio books and the narrator can really make or break a book. This narrator was perfect!

17 of 18 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

LOVED this book

Would you listen to On the Island again? Why?

no but I would read it again, great story!!

What did you like best about this story?

I fell in love with this story when I read it, so much so that I decided to listen to it when an audio book became available. There is something about having a story read to you that can make the it become more alive. I must say that I enjoyed reading it better than listening to it because of the narration. This is an awesome book but the narration needed work...

What didn’t you like about Heidi Baker’s performance?

My biggest complaint is the narrator spoke TOOO FAST!!!!!!! I tried to slow it down, but the 0.5 speed made it too slow. She had a pleasant voice, but I enjoyed reading this book much better than I enjoyed listening to it.

7 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Great story!

Any additional comments?

I really enjoyed this book. Felt like I was right there on the island with them!

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Good Story. Bad Narration.

Is there anything you would change about this book?

I would change the Narrator. She didn't differentiate the characters enough that you know who is talking and she spoke way too fast.

What would have made this romance irresistible?

She didn't pause at appropriate times and it was hard to tell which character was speaking. She needed to do a pitch or voice change for each character. She also read too fast.

13 of 15 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

✫✫ 5 Star Story, 3 Star Narration ✫✫

I read this book about 6 years ago but that was before I wrote reviews. I got a friend to listen to this book and when she started it just made me want to read it again so I decided to listen to the audiobook too! I remembered really loving this book when I read it but it's been so long it was like the first time all of again and I loved it this time too. This is one of those books that you can't stop until you know how it ends!

TJ was a lot more mature than I expected from the very first page , he never acted 16 which I think made this book better for me. Anna was a sweet and strong women and I loved her character! I also loved the friendship that TJ and Anna form while on the island. This book ended exactly how I needed it to end too!

The narrator was not the correct choice for this book in my opinion. She is a good narrator but she was a little to upbeat and chipper even during the worst parts. She also didn't do a great job at differentiating between the male & female characters. I would have liked dual narrators or at least a narrator with a good male voice.

8 of 9 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Adelise
  • Sydney, Australia
  • 12-17-12

Reader ruined a great story

I have read this book in kindle form and I loved it, could not put it down! I could not even listen to the entire book this time. The reader was difficult to understand - as in I had no idea who was talking, who was thinking, etc. Sorry for the bad review but I just wanted to warn people. Do yourself a favour and buy the kindle/paperback, amazon still have it in stock I'm sure!

8 of 9 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Wonderful story...narration only so-so

What made the experience of listening to On the Island the most enjoyable?

The story itself made the experience enjoyable. It's a heck of a read, taking listeners on a real edge-of-your-seat rollercoaster ride.

What did you like best about this story?

The growth of Anna and TJ, and the slow development of their relationship was definitely the best part of this book.

What three words best describe Heidi Baker’s performance?

Needs more variety.

Any additional comments?

Narrator Heidi Baker did not change her voice at all when she switched between reading parts in Anna's voice and TJ's. As a result, it was very hard to stop and start listening in the middle of a section and quickly pick up where you were again--both characters sounded like a twenty-something female. Which, ironically, neither of them were. She's not a bad narrator, but definitely would not be my first choice for a book like this. I ended up wishing I'd had time to read the print version instead.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Don't miss this one. .

I have great difficulty reading due to vision loss. However, I read this book on my Kindle before I located it on Audible. It took me awhile, well worth the time as the story is so well written. The story has quite a hook from the beginnning. This author takes you into the experience so well. I can't imagine writing this story but I truly thank you Tracey for sharing this rich story with us. I was surprised it was just one download when it took me so long to read it. The narrator is very good. But her voice was not what I had imagined in my head. She did a great job with the story, my only critic is in differentiating the voices, there were times it was difficult for me to figure out who was talking. Please don't let anything stand between you and this lovely story. Lately so much seems to be geared toward a younger audience. This is a author for all of us. She knows how to write a story that is intelligent enough from teens to older adults can thoroughly enjoy. I did I am 59. Thank you so much. This is one of the memoriable ones. I hope we are able to read more from this author. Great Job! Thank you Audible.

7 of 8 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Enjoyed the story and Loved the narrator!

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Yes, do buy this audiobook! Enjoyed the story, characters and a happy ending! Interesting survival tips, in case I ever get stranded on an island. I will definitely pack lots of earrings with hoops!

What does Heidi Baker bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

I listen to 2 -3 audiobooks a month and a good narrator is a must. I have listened to books, based on the narrator alone, and this narrator, Heidi, would fit into this catagory. What a joy to listen to!

Any additional comments?

I first downloaded this book based on the author being an Iowan, and wasn't disappointed. Any new books in the works?

7 of 8 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Please NO bad language or sex.

What disappointed you about On the Island?

Swearing and sex takes away from a book for me.

How would you have changed the story to make it more enjoyable?

The English language is so vast! Use it!

Have you listened to any of Heidi Baker’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

No, I haven't. I think she did a nice job. There were a few times Heidi read too fast. That's why I gave a lower rating.

What character would you cut from On the Island?

None

Any additional comments?

Other than the above mentioned reasons I would have given the book 5 stars.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Miss
  • 04-21-19

Oh I loved this!

This had everything. Adventure, romance, sadness, suspense. You name it! I loved the narrator’s voice and style too. I usually listen to mysteries and this was such a breath of fresh air. I really recommend it.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Andre
  • 12-23-16

this was a phenomenon. I loved it so much, I cry.

this book was so good that I almost cried when there wasn't a part two.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Peter
  • 08-20-13

A lovely story

this is a really lovely story, I have not been able to stop listening, if you like travel, adventure, survival and romance then this book is for you.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • M
  • 09-05-12

You won't be able to stop listening !!

Such an excellent book - the story had me hooked from the moment I started listening and I was plugging into my i-Pod whenever I could. The characters are brilliant and likeable and Tracey Garvis Graves weaves their story in a believable way.

The only slight downside is the narration at the beginning - Heidi speaks way too fast - I just kept thinking "SLOW DOWN" but she settles into it, so persevere.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Carol
  • 07-05-12

A castaway book that I couldn't put down.

I thought this was a fab little audio book, I found it was a great end of month gap filler for when you are in between or if you just want a shorter summer read.
It was lively and interesting all the way through and I found that I couldn't put it down.
It was a typical castaway book and the narrator did a good job and by bringing the characters to life.
I would have preferred the narrator to slow down a little bit as I found her speech too fast for me, but as I was able to set a slower reading speed on my i pod I then sat back and thoroughly enjoyed listening to this audio book at a more relaxing pace.

Sort by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Kathryn
  • 02-27-19

A good listen

A romantic story of survival. Enjoyed the story however it was spoiled by having only a female narrator. If you missed whose POV it was, it sometimes got confusing.
This story is good for those who want to read a love story without the author relating every detail about their sexual experiences.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Hugh
  • 10-12-18

Great Story. Shame about the Narrator

A lovely, realistic Romance. I have always fantasised about being on a deserted island with a beautiful woman. This story tells it warts and all and is a great representation of what it might really be like to be stranded in the ocean on an island. The 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami is worked nicely into the story as well.
A great story but spoilt by the narrator. 1. I am not keen on American narrators. 2. This narrator read way to quickly. 3. The way that the story is written with alternating chapters between the two main characters Anna and TJ. It would have made sense to have a male and female reader/narrator. This has been done very successfully in other audio books. This narrator seems to have just raced through the story in an almost monotone high pitched American twang which was grating to the ears at times. I would much prefer an Australian or British narrator.