I Am Still Alive by Kate Alice Marshall

I Am Still Alive

Kate Alice Marshall

When Jess is stranded in the woods she must fight with everything she has to survive because she wants revenge on the people and circumstances that have brought her here.

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Cheryl Strayed's Wild meets The Revenant in this heart-pounding story of survival and revenge in the unforgiving wilderness.

After
Jess is alone. Her cabin has burned to the ground. She knows if she doesn’t act fast, the cold will kill her before she has time to worry about food. But she is still alive—for now.
 
Before
Jess hadn’t seen her survivalist, off-the-grid dad in over a decade. But after a car crash killed her mother and left her injured, she was forced to move to his cabin in the remote Canadian wilderness. Just as Jess was beginning to get to know him, a secret from his past paid them a visit, leaving her father dead and Jess stranded.
 
After
With only her father’s dog for company, Jess must forage and hunt for food, build shelter, and keep herself warm. Some days it feels like the wild is out to destroy her, but she’s stronger than she ever imagined.

Jess will survive. She has to. She knows who killed her father…and she wants revenge.


Advance Galley Reviews

I had the privilege to read this book through Penguin's First to Read, finding a gripping read in the survival genre from a young woman’s perspective. This work fit the speed and moderation of much of the YA thrillers of recent memory, but with some unique structural considerations and as real a protagonist as possible, considering the confines of the piece. Marshall picks up on the necessities of the winter survival story (with a passage offering winking nod to Hatchet and its copycats), and keeps the most enthralling points. The structure of the story in the first third, a diary recounting the struggles of protagonist Jess, is dropped a bit too summarily, in my view, and the time jumps before the third act are also somewhat convenient for the reader who was following the struggle more devotedly than the conspiracy. Overall, however, I did rip through the book with the ferocity of a lone wolf at forest’s edge (which of course also shows up in the pages of this text), and I appreciated some of the bleakness that matches the genre’s growth from the Gary Paulsen generation. While I wouldn’t call it light reading, this book keeps good pace and provides plenty of tension to fit any season.

Kate Marshall tells an intoxicating tale of survival and revenge in I am Still Alive. When 16 year old Jess is stranded in the wildness alone, she must fight to survive and some days thinking about revenge is the only thing that keeps her going. Kate Marshall's writing is absolutely brilliant and has a way of keeping you engaged throughout the story. I particularly loved the way Jess' disability was so accurately included. As someone who deals with my own disabilities from a younger age, I was drawn to this commodity. I could feel Jess' suffering, her determination, her fight. I stormed through this book in one day, longing for answers. I hadn't read a survival story quite like this one before. And while I expected more of a thriller aspect to it, I still wasn't disappointed when that component never really surfaced. There were moments in this book where I cringed (hunting animals and the details that go with it) but I do feel like they were necessary elements to make the story come to life. All in all, I loved every moment of this book.

I Am Still Alive is a dark and twisted read! It was so full of suspense, I couldn’t put it down! I would definitely recommend it!

I had the opportunity to read this book I Am Still Alive, and I really enjoyed it. I couldn't wait to find out what happens next. It seems like a lot of books lately switch between characters or time periods and this book is no exception. It switches between before and after until there is only now. The main character, Jess, is a sixteen year old girl who has been through a lot in a short amount of time. She finds her inner courage, and her survival instinct is strong. I really enjoyed her character. She is a fighter, and she realizes that she is stronger than she knows. This is a great story. It has loss, tragedy, death, resilience, survival, and an awakening. I would definitely recommend this book.

Jess is all alone. Her mother has died leaving her to fend for herself. The state sends her to staty with her only living kin, her father. But he lives in the middle of the Canadian woods, hiding from his past. When the two worlds collide it leaves Jess alone, wondering how she will face the future alone again.

Improbability notwithstanding, this is an entertaining story of a teen girl who is sent to live with her estranged father after the death of her mother. That she ends up in the back of nowhere and is quickly thrust into life and death survivalist mode was certainly not what social services had in mind. Bo, the wolf-dog, held my attention and pulled me along the tale of survival and revenge

Wow. I don’t even know where to start about this book. It’s about Jess who is basically trying to survive alone in the woods. I’m really not doing it justice but that’s the super basic gist. She is tested in so many ways and if this book taught me anything it is that I would die if I was ever in this situation. You don’t have to like camping to enjoy this book. (I hate camping. It’s so not my thing.) If you like strong MCs - difficult circumstances - and high stakes this book is for you.

16 year old Jess Cooper is still recovering from the fatal collision that killed her mother. She is sent to the remote Canadian wilderness to live with a father she barely knows. When tragedy strikes once again, Jess finds herself alone with only limited resources and her father's dog Bo. The cold will kill her first and winter is coming. With little hope of rescue she must remember to be smart not strong, if she wants to survive. I Am Still Alive, is a YA contemporary fiction about a young girl who finds herself alone in the Canadian wilderness. I don't want to spoil too much of the plot but there is quite a bit of suspense and a hint of mystery as well. The novel transitions with the character retelling the events as either before or after, with the pivotal moment explaining how she ended up alone. The plot is primarily about her enduring nature and the elements but there is a parallel story that connects to her father as well. I really enjoyed this novel and ended up finishing it in an afternoon because I just couldn't put it down. An exciting and engaging novel about enduring life's challenges; a must read for 2018.

Lately it's unusual for a book to hold my attention to the point that I don't want to put it down. This book did that. The last part of the book felt very suspenseful and had me reading quickly because I just wanted to know what happened. This is a survival story, but its more than just that. It's a story about a young woman who is broken, physically and emotionally. Through horrific events she pieces herself back together. Through this process becomes stronger than she ever would have been had those events never happened. It's a story of resilience and it's a very good one at that.

Sixteen year old Jess is at the mercy of nature and the crew of men who murdered her father. She has to use the survival skills Jess learned in the short time that she was reunited with her father in order to find a way to live through winter. I was hoping for more details, such as learning to make acorn flour that was outlined in My Side of the Mountain. Due to a fortuitous turn of events in school physical education, Jess happens to be adequately proficient in bow and arrow hunting. My favorite character was Bo, the dog. Be warned that nature is brutal, and both Bo and Jess have to engage in vivid depictions of killing animals. I finished the book in one reading because I had to know if Jess was able to get revenger for her father's murder. Thank you to First to Read for providing an advance copy of I Am Still Alive.

This book draws you in and makes you want to know how it ends. My heart broke for Jess, but at the same time her grit and determination were admirable. I have to admit I shed a tear at the end. The plot and writing were good and I would definitely recommend. Thanks Frist to Read for my advance copy!

--Thanks to First to Read for providing me a complimentary copy of I AM STILL ALIVE by Kate Alice Marshall in exchange for my honest review.-- A common failing of most young adult books that have recently hit the stores is the lack of originality. "I am Still Alive" is a book that in many ways falls into this same problem. The book is set in the middle of a Canadian forest and has a strong theme of survival. In many ways it reminds me strongly of a book called "My Side of the Mountain." The author tries create the feel of an original story in two main ways. The first way is to split the narration, so that you have the story line of before the tragedy and after the tragedy running side by side. This effect ends up being annoying as throughout the read I simply wanted to know what was happening at a given time. The second thing the author does to create a unique story line is to add a second level of the story. This accomplishes the task of making the story unique much better. Throughout the book, I was astonished by the general implausibility of the story line but I was also intrigued and wanted to read more. The author does a good job of drawing the reader into the story and convincing us we want to know how the story ends. However, once I got to the end I felt kind of let down by the ending. It seemed like the loose ends were just thrown together to finish the story. Overall, I would say this book is good for a quick read. It doesn't have much of substance or extreme originality but it is still enjoyable for a read.

***Thanks to First to Read for providing me a complimentary copy of I AM STILL ALIVE by Kate Alice Marshall in exchange for my honest review.*** ——>WARNING: dead animals, some graphic

 


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