A Teen Fiction Read With Equal Doses of Terror & Mystery

Lock the door. Do not go outside. You are not alone.

No one goes out in the mist. It is not a natural occurrence. There are things lurking within it. Shapeless creatures that appear and then disappear. People who enter the mist don’t return. And if they do return, they aren’t the same.

Sophie’s mother was not the only person to go missing from Bitter Rock, Alaska in 2003. The others from her research group disappeared too. Their bodies were never found. There was no evidence to indicate what became of them. There was, however, rumours about a girl. She was found alone, curled up in the bottom of a small boat floating in the water. No one could explain how she got there.

Sophie never knew her mother. She was told her mother died in Montana, many years ago. However, a photo surfaces of Sophie as a child, standing next to her mother on a beach in Bitter Rock just days before her ‘death.’ 

The locals believe Bitter Rock is cursed. In 1884, a Russian fishing vessel ran aground near the island after being blown off course due to heavy fog. Clothing and half-eaten meals were discovered on the ship. The crew was never found.

During World War II, several soldiers were stationed on an air strip on an island off the coast of Alaska. One night a heavy fog rolled in. The next morning, everyone was gone. The walls were covered with bullet holes, but no bodies were ever found.

In 1973, a frantic radio broadcast was received from a religious group who had settled on Bitter Rock. There were panicked cries of unknown figures hidden in the mist. None of the 31 residents were ever heard from again.

Sophie travels to Bitter Rock under the guise of being a research intern. Hoping to find any answers about her mother’s involvement, she investigates strange occurrences on the island but gets more than she bargained for.

Our Last Echoes is a paranormal thriller blended with horror. Author Kate Alice Marshall has a talent for creating stories that bleed with atmosphere. Every little detail about Bitter Rock creates a sense of a world gone wrong. Birds that flock in odd patterns. The sound in the distance that’s like singing but is anything but benevolent. A blackness in the air that isn’t just a colour but a texture. As a reader you can feel the mist crawl across your skin as the story unfolds. The chapters alternate between Sophie’s storyline and transcripts from past events on the island. There are several Easter eggs to Marshall’s other novel, Rules for Vanishing, hinting at a wider plot that has not yet fully emerged.

Our Last Echoes is terrifying, mystifying, and full of nightmares. It had me scared yet yearning for more. The ending opened a door for the wider storyline to continue and I am eagerly awaiting to read the next book from Kate Alice Marshall!