A gripping, gritty YA dystopian thriller with the unusual setting of a cruise ship. I really enjoyed this read, although it was perhaps a little too lengthy.
The narrative switches between two teenagers, Esther and Nik, with occasional viewpoints from Hadley, the enemy. The year is 2094 and generations of stranded people have been confined to a ship, the Arcadia, since a war fought with biological weapons put them into quarantine. Esther is one of the lucky few who is training to be a medic and if her grades are good enough will be allowed to leave the ship. Nik is part of the underclass and has a role in the resistance movement which aims to liberate everyone from the totalitarian rule of the mainland. Esther is drawn into the rebellion, finding her loyalties and friendships tested while clashing with Nik.
The Stranded is a page-turner, with plenty of action, snappy dialogue, eerie atmosphere and credible details. It was first published by Penguin in 2022. Look out for my review of the sequel, The Exiled, next week!
Part of TheWriteReads blog tour in association with Penguin.