A powerful sorcerer, a shipwreck, and a complicated love triangle — Shakespeare’s desert island play is one of his most popular for good reason. Mixing romance, revenge, and even a coming-of-age story, it features some of the Bard’s most memorable characters: Prospero, Miranda, and Caliban.
Considered the first English novel (and first work of realistic fiction), this classic recounts the tale of a shipwreck survivor in the Caribbean and his 28 years on an island he calls “The Island of Despair.” Through the years, he encounters cannibals, pirates, and wild beasts, ultimately learning self-sufficiency.
Told in Mitchell’s characteristic slightly surrealist style, this sprawling tale set in 1799 (a Man Booker finalist in 2010) follows de Zoet, a low-level clerk in the Dutch East India Company living in exile on the artificial island of Dejima off the coast of Japan. When de Zoet sets foot on the mainland, his life collides with midwife Orito, whose story becomes forever linked to his.
Considered one of the most influential novels of the ‘90s Garland’s inventive story is set on an island off the coast of Thailand, untouched by the overtourism that plagues the Thai coast. Backpacker Richard is introduced to this paradise by a couple he meets, but soon finds out the beauty of “The Beach” hides a sinister truth.
A YA reimagining of the H.G. Wells classic The Island of Dr. Moreau, this captivating gothic thriller centers on Juliet, daughter of the reckless doctor who has been conducting gruesome animal experiments on a remote island. When Juliet discovers her father might still be alive, she sets out to learn the truth only to discover it’s much more complicated than she could have imagined.
Martel’s international blockbuster tells the story of Piscine (Pi) Patel, set adrift with a tiger after the ship carrying his family’s zoo to Canada sinks at sea. When Pi washes up in Mexico weeks later and tells his fantastical story, the reader must decide what’s true and what’s allegory.