Phoenix Island (Bram Stoker Award for Young Readers)

By John Dixon

WINNER OF THE BRAM STOKER AWARD FOR improved fulfillment IN a tender grownup NOVEL

John Dixon’s severely acclaimed Phoenix Island reads like “Lord of the Flies meets Wolverine and Cool Hand Luke” (F. Paul Wilson, writer of Repairman Jack). For lovers of The Bourne Identity, Alex Rider, and Melissa Marr.

The pass judgement on instructed Carl that at some point he’d need to make a decision precisely what sort of individual he may develop into. yet on Phoenix Island, the alternative can be made for him.

A champion boxer with a pointy hook and a quick mood, sixteen-year-old Carl Freeman has been shuffled from foster domestic to foster domestic. He can’t appear to remain out of trouble—using his fists to protect weaker classmates from bullies. His most modern incident sends his opponent to the emergency room, and now the court docket is sending Carl to the worst position on the earth: Phoenix Island.

Classified as a “terminal facility,” it’s the tip of the road for delinquents who've no domestic, no family members, and no destiny. situated someplace faraway the coast of the United States—and resistant to its laws—the island is a grueling Spartan-style boot camp run by way of sadistic drill sergeants who express no mercy to their younger, orphan trainees. Sentenced to stick till his eighteenth birthday, Carl plans to play via the principles, so he makes associates together with his wisecracking bunkmate, Ross, and a mysterious gray-eyed lady named Octavia. yet he makes enemies, too, and after a number of tough scrapes, he earns himself the nickname “Hollywood” in addition to a string of punishments, together with a brutal evening within the “sweatbox.” yet that’s not anything in comparison to what awaits him within the “Chop Shop”—a mystery govt lab the place Carl is given whatever he by no means dreamed of.

A new life…A new physique. a brand new mind. presents from the fatherly outdated guy, who desires to rework Carl into anything he’s uncertain he desires to develop into. For this can be no traditional executive undertaking. Phoenix Island is flooring 0 for the way forward for strive against intelligence.

And for Carl, it’s only the start…

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After a time, the rain slackened, and within the delicate rhythm of its fall, Carl slipped once again to sleep, like sand earlier than the tides. HE DREAMED OF THE prior. His father, earlier than the tragedy. jogging jointly, soiled snow flecked in cinders flanking the sidewalk. The previous local in iciness. The chilly, the wisp in their iciness jackets, his father’s peak. Happiness. Older boys, collected round a form at the flooring. suggest laughter. His father’s voice, loud and powerful. the men scattering, long gone. The lump, a man—old Cobbie, the drunk—his father supporting him up, strolling him down the road to Rose’s Diner. Seating Cobbie on the counter, handing Rose cash. Telling her, “Coffee and a sandwich. ” again out in the street, Carl asking what had occurred. His father crouching down, putting his vast arms on Carl’s shoulders. His father’s eyes, staring into his. His father telling him, “This is what I do, Carl. And sometime for those who develop up, it is going to be as much as you to guard them, all of the those who can’t fend for themselves. an excellent guy won’t provide in to worry whilst there’s paintings to be performed and somebody wishes him. Will you do it? ” His personal voice: “Yes. I promise . . . ” CARL WOKE within the center of the evening, nonetheless crouching. The dream have been lucid, like a window at the earlier. He brushed at his wounds and listened to the sounds past his cage. Dripping leaves. Jungle sounds, quieter now, birds calling from side to side, sounding by some means misplaced and mournful. a mild breeze rustled the palm fronds and shed a patter of raindrops. The flag clasp dinged rhythmically opposed to the steel pole, like a far off bell tolling a funeral. He sat again opposed to the cage bars and stretched out his stiff legs. A deep voice stated, “Carl Freeman. ” It was once now not a question. DEEP within the evening, Octavia scratched the toothbrush around the toilet tiles, urgent now not the bristles however the plastic deal with as demanding as she may perhaps into the ground. Periodically, her nerves acquired the simplest of her, and she or he stopped and rushed to the bathroom. and every time she vomited, she hated herself for her weak spot. She needed to be powerful. powerful like Carl. They acknowledged he’d fought Decker and 3 others all while. crushed them. Then overwhelmed Parker. She considered his palms. the massive knuckles, the scars. considered his sq. jaw and a bit of crooked nostril and the sunshine scars round his hazel eyes. Remembered the way in which these eyes had pleaded along with her the final time they’d talked. And she’d became on him. Now she needed she may take all of it again. So what if he’d flipped while he’d obvious the object? after all he had—anybody could have, no longer realizing the tale, simply seeing the headline. She remembered the evening she’d set her condominium afire. Remembered the issues her stepfather had done—again—and remembered how he’d regarded, passed-out inebriated, remembered the power it had taken to unfold the gas and strike the fit. Counselors and psychiatrists or even the pass judgement on had suggested her towards regret, and she’d lied and instructed them she used to be sorry, yet she was once pleased she had stopped him, blissful she had killed him.

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