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Sacrifice Island

3.77  ·  Rating details ·  48 Ratings  ·  30 Reviews
A tropical paradise…

Jemma and Alex are paranormal investigators, writing a book on hauntings around the world. When Jemma begins researching a cryptic diary written by a young woman who committed suicide on a supposedly haunted island in the Philippines years earlier, they think they've found their next chapter.

A tragic past…

It doesn't take long for the pair to learn th
Published October 15th 2013 by DarkFuse (first published October 13th 2013)
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Nov 03, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Paranormal Paradise WHAT IT'S ABOUTJemma and Alex are paranormal investigators, each with their own unique gifts, who are compiling stories for a book. They decide to travel to the Philippines to investigate an island that is linked to a terrifying legend.WHAT I LIKED-The characters were very well developed. Both characters were interesting especially as they each had gifts that they used to decipher the people and the areas they investigate.-No one is quite what or who they seem and there are a ...more
Nov 05, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2013-reads, horror
Another great Darkfuse novella.

I enjoyed the setting and the opportunity to read about a new (to me) type of monster. I love it when an author goes the extra mile to add interesting historical and anthropological elements to the story. Characterization was good; story was interesting and well written. I will definitely be reading more of Ms. Dearborn's work, including her other Darkfuse title--Trinity.

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Jan 16, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: modern-horror
This story is not bad. Ghost hunters arrive on an island and attempt to determine what exactly is going on. The story is best when the reader is kept guessing. The truth of what is happening gets revealed prior to the climax and at this point it slows own a bit. The atmosphere and mystery are handled skillfully in sections.
I thought the early scenes on the island, with glimpses of what might actually be living there, were suspenseful and creepy. I would've liked to have seen more of them. Overal
Space Out With Sci Fi in June The Haunted Reading Room
Review: SACRIFICE ISLAND by Kristin Dearborn

Author Kristin Dearborn successfully delivers tautly plotted, well-characterized horror stories. She well knows how to thrum the chords of horror to chill our spines, stand our hair on end, linger in our minds. SACRIFICE ISLAND is a very scary [human scary as well as creature scary] tale of a dangerous but beautiful island in the Philippines, once a religious retreat, abandoned for decades. Well, not completely abandoned....
Nov 22, 2013 rated it really liked it
Part of Darkfuse's novella series, Kristin Dearborn weaves a clever, addictively readable little horror tale set in the Phillipines, where Alex and Jemma, amateur ghost hunters, are investigating stories about an island plagued by mysterious deaths for decades. The locals stay away, and some know more about the place. But unknown to the duo, the truth about the place is far stranger and deadlier than mere ghosts and mysterious suicides. Dearborn layers in the details in just enough touches to pu ...more
Oct 15, 2013 rated it really liked it
This was my first introduction to Kristin Dearborn's writing, and I was not disappointed. The novella begins with Jemma and Alex, individuals with their own unique "talents", investigating paranormal activity on an off-the-beaten track island in the Philippines. The descriptions of the dark atmosphere and the animosity of the island's natives to the newcomers are made immediately clear. This story was crafted very well, and made for a fast, compelling read. The more I learned about the history o ...more
Oct 15, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: darkfuse
Sacrifice Island was a short, entertaining novella from Kristin Dearborn. With simple dialog and plotting, it read very fast - even for a slow reader like me.

I thought it was a bit choppy at times, and it never really took off for me for some reason. I think some of the plot could have been expanded and explored deeper and the characters, while fleshed out well for a short work, could have used some extra depth. Overall, I liked it for a quick, fun read. 3 Stars
Ms. Nikki
I am truly hard-pressed to give this read 3 stars due to the fact that much was revealed way too early in the story for there to be any real thrill to this read.

When Jemma and Alex first arrived on the island, there was mystery and the potential for horror, but once the interactions between Terry, Lucky, and Karen started to happen, any tension or build-up quickly drifted away.

Also, the dynamic between the best friends was off. The more I read, the more I was convinced that there were definite
From the depths of all things kind of paranormal, dark and a little creepy, comes Sacrifice Island by Kristin Dearborn. Strange disappearances and mutilated bodies turn a beautiful tropical paradise into an island of dark foreboding and death. Two paranormal investigators writing a book of “hauntings” from around the world get caught up to their eyeballs in the terror that is hidden beneath a former Catholic holy place and refuge. People were driven to madness and suicide, claiming to hear “spir ...more
Oct 22, 2013 rated it it was ok
This one didn't quite work for me, although DarkFuse novellas are usually top notch. It was decently plotted, fairly well written, but failed to engage, mostly because I didn't like or care about the characters. The setting was spooky and exotic, and it's always interesting to learn about mythological creatures from different parts of the world.
Anthony Hains
Jan 30, 2014 rated it liked it
Sacrifice Island is about two ghost hunters who are conducting research on various haunted locations around the world for their next book. Alex and Jemma, a team for a number of years, decide to travel to the Philippines to examine a nearby island which served as a religious retreat center before some visitors started killing themselves on site and others began disappearing. Expecting an island jam-packed with ghosts, they set out to dig up unusual accounts of hauntings for their upcoming anthol ...more
Josef Hernandez
Sep 29, 2013 rated it really liked it
Another great DarkFuse release

For a full review, please go to and follow me on Twitter @josener
Mar 26, 2014 rated it really liked it
Great story!! And, thanks to the TV show, Grimm, i already knew what the horror is that lives on Sacrifice Island!

Looking forward to read the author's other book.

Lee Howard
Jul 26, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: horror
I really enjoyed Dearborn's SACRIFICE ISLAND. I felt like I was there in the tropics. The characters were interesting and well-drawn. The action moved along at a fast pace, and the horror kept growing, deepening. The unexpected love story was a nice touch and well done. I look forward to reading more of her work.
Allen Adams

In the literary realm, horror is one of the more uneven genres. There are a lot – and I do mean a lot – of horror books floating around. Unfortunately, quantity doesn’t necessarily equal quality. Much of the horror material out there is derivative and stale, a bunch of overused, repurposed ideas thrown together in the desperate hope of finding something engaging, or at the very least readable.

Suffice it to say, picking up a book by an author with whose wor
Mika Lietzén
Oct 26, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: horror
There's trouble in paradise; an island in the Philippines hides something evil – and it seems some of the locals are feeding it an occasional tourist or two.

Enter the brave paranormal investigators, Jemma and Alex; Jemma is the one with the psychic skills and a general aversion to life, while Alex serves as her loyal fixer. They jet off to Southeast Asia and are met by Terry, an expat Englishman, and a dodgy guide known as Mr. Lucky. As the ghost hunters start poking their noses around the islan
Book review originally published here:

The idea behind Sacrifice Island is a pretty well-known trope. Jemma and Alex are paranormal investigators, writing about hauntings all across the globe. They travel to a secluded place in the Philippines where, apparently, lots of people have gone missing on a haunted island nearby. On the island, Jemma finds a diary of a young woman who committed suicide there ages ago, and she begins reading all about the woman’s d
Christina  Torretta
Jan 01, 2014 rated it really liked it
Yay! Horror! And a female writer writing horror. It's fabulous!

I was right into this one. There are a few paragraphs, the first being one of them, that gives you just a little bit of information about the island. Not enough to really give you any detail, but enough to make you want to read more. And speaking of detail, I loved the amount in this. There were certain paragraphs that I was really impressed with and I found myself loving the detail that Kristin put into this.

However, it does slow do
Rob Twinem
Oct 19, 2013 rated it really liked it
What I particularly loved about this short story was the setting in the Philippines. I could taste the salt sea air, I could see the confusion and the congestion and I could feel the atmosphere in the beach side bars overlooking the lapping waves and the golden sand. In this tropical setting dwells the Aswang a vampire type creature living on Sakripisiyuhin/Sacrifice Island needing to feed on "sacrifices" to survive, almost impossible to kill and then only if it's curse can be transferred to ano ...more
Nikki Hopeman
Nov 18, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This novella takes a monster of myth from the Philippines and turns it into something new. A duo of paranormal investigators heads to a tropical island to write the next chapter in their book on haunted locations. They’re out to uncover a mystery left behind in the diary of a young woman driven to suicide. They get more than they expect.

Jemma’s character grabbed me first. The reader learns early in the story that something’s not quite right with Jemma, but I couldn’t tell exactly what or where i
Paranormal investigators Jemma and Alex are writing a book that focuses on ghosts. When Jemma finds a journal that describes a woman going to an island in the Philippines and being enticed by spirits, she decides it would make a great last chapter for the book. After arriving, they start getting warnings to stay away, some subtle, some not so subtle. There's not much more I can add without giving away some good bits of the story so pick up a copy and read it!

This was a very interesting book. Bef
Christopher Irvin
Oct 12, 2013 rated it really liked it
SACRIFICE ISLAND is a novella about a pair of paranormal investigators who head to the Philippines in search of material for their latest book. It’s difficult to delve into more of the plot without getting into serious spoiler territory, but suffice it to say, Dearborn does an excellent job of reinvigorating what may seem like an old story and worn tropes. She doesn’t waste time with pieces of the mystery that you can put together early on, instead focusing on the characters and their unique tra ...more
Oct 05, 2013 rated it liked it
This is a story about two ghost hunters(Jemma & Alex)who are writing a book. Find a diary then wind up going to this island in the Philippines. To record and find out if ghost are causing these things to happen on the island(Sacrifice Island)for the book. Then things change and go wrong. This novella was a good quick read and had a nice flow to the story. I would have to call this a paranormal thriller. This was the first book by Kristin I have read and will be moving Trinty up in my tbr pil ...more
Glenn Rolfe
Sep 09, 2013 rated it really liked it
I have Kristin Dearborn's first book, Trinity, on my Kindle. I haven't read it yet, but after reading this novella, it is now on my MUST READ list!
This woman has it all–great characters, fun story, perfect descriptive powers: Painting the picture, but never making a mess with too much color. Qualities worthy of envy.
If you don't believe me, grab a copy and give it a read yourself!
Well done, Ms. Dearborn.
Naomi Blackburn
Dec 14, 2013 rated it liked it
Mediocre coming from this publish. I thought this book was pretty boring given the topic at hand. It wasn't as scary as some I have seen come from DarkFuse Publishing. The "jacket" was actually scarier than the actual book. Still, it was well written. I just wished the author would have gone creepier.
Dec 27, 2013 rated it liked it
Although I think that Dearborn's first book TRINITY was overall stronger, I enjoyed SACRIFICE ISLAND and absolutely loved the ending. Definitely worth checking out.
Kim (Wistfulskimmies Book Reviews)
Review to follow.....
Oct 15, 2013 rated it liked it
Fun, quick beach read. Nothing new or ground-breaking in this genre. But I always appreciate a good novella.
Nov 03, 2013 rated it really liked it
Very enjoyable plot and interesting characters. Ghost hunters and a cursed island in the Philippines. Highly recommended.
Nov 18, 2015 rated it it was amazing
First read of Kristin Dearborn, will read Trinity by her next. I really enjoyed the Aswang legend. I like anything original and this was as original a novel as I've read in some time.
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If it screams, squelches, or bleeds, Kristin Dearborn has probably written about it. She revels in comments like “But you look so normal…how do you come up with that stuff?” A life-long New Englander, she aspires to the footsteps of the local masters, Messrs. King and Lovecraft. When not writing or rotting her brain with cheesy horror flicks (preferably creature features!) she can be found scaling ...more
More about Kristin Dearborn