Dr. Franklin’s Island by Ann Halam

Dr. Franklin's Island While on their way to a science camp for teen geniuses, Semi, Miranda and Arnie’s plane crashes. The only ones left alive, they struggle to survive via Tom Hanks Castaway style on a small deserted island. But they’re not exactly alone. Hidden at the island’s center is the compound of mad scientist Dr. Franklin. And let’s just say that nowhere in his plans for our three heroes does the word “rescue” appear. Dr. Franklin is obsessed with gene therapy, especially the kind where he splices together human and animal DNA. While this may sound like a Dr. Moreau rip-off (for those late on the lit. scene, The Island of Dr. Moreau is a classic novel NOT just a TERRIBLE movie starring Val Kilmer and a bloated, pasty Marlon Brando) it’s not at all. Semi and Miranda’s incredibly rendered friendship, stretched to it’s breaking point while they try not to allow themselves the comfort of insanity as Franklin decides what animals they will become, is what carries this book over from simply science fiction to probing, deep psychological thriller.

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