Having survived the horrors of Savage Island, Grady is now stuck working for Gold, the psychopath who masterminded the gruesome competition. Sent on a “team-building exercise” in a remote castle, he starts to plot his escape. Ben and Lizzie are in hiding, presumed dead after escaping the island. If they’re ever to return to their families, they need to bring Gold down. So they secretly join Grady in the castle. But as the doors slam shut and the series of deadly challenges between them and freedom are revealed, it looks like history is going to repeat itself…
About Savage Island When reclusive millionaire Marcus Gold announces that he’s staging an “Iron Teen” competition on his private island in the Outer Hebrides, Ben, Lizzie, Will, Grady and Carmen sign up. They’d be mad not to when the prize is one million pounds … each. But when the competition commences, the group begin to regret their decision –this is no ordinary contest. Other teams are hunting their competitors and attacking them. As the pressure intensifies and their survival instincts kick in, the friends struggle to stick together. Who can they really trust?
Bryony was a winner of the 2008 Undiscovered Voices competition and is the author of ANGEL’S FURY and THE WEIGHT OF SOULS,winner of the Wirral Grammar School Award –Best Science Fiction. She has written PHOENIX RISING, PHOENIX BURNING and SAVAGE ISLAND for Stripes. Bryony lives with her husband and two children in a village in Gloucestershire. Visit bryonypearce.co.uk | Twitter
My thoughts: I hadn’t read Savage Island, but I am definitely going back and rectifying that ASAP, this was so good and I need to know all the details about what happened to Ben, Lizzie and Grady on the island. However, it’s not essential to know as there’s plenty of information given in Cruel Castle to give you the back story to their relationship and trauma.
A sort of Battle Royale/Hunger Games but British, and darkly funny, Cruel Castle pits a group of young psychopaths against each other in the ultimate escape room challenge – solve the puzzles and get out of the castle alive. Ben, Lizzie and Aaday aren’t psychopathic but are still dealing with their traumatic experiences. They want to live but not to the cost of anyone’s life, this makes them vulnerable but also very brave. They were definitely likeable, unlike the rest of the group – I don’t think I’d have been so willing to work with them.
Grady is playing his own long game and I couldn’t quite work out his motives, I think book three might have the answers…
*I was kindly gifted a copy of this book in exchange for taking part in the blog tour but all opinions remain my own.