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3.61  ·  Rating details ·  2,726 ratings  ·  207 reviews
They came to the lush, deserted island to compete on a popular reality TV show. Each one hoped to be the last to leave. Now they're just hoping to stay alive. It seems the island isn't deserted after all. Contestants and crew members are disappearing, but they aren't being eliminated by the game. They're being taken by the monstrous half-human creatures that live in the ju ...more
Mass Market Paperback, 285 pages
Published February 1st 2009 by Leisure Books (Dorchester Publishing Co.) (first published January 27th 2009)
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3.61  · 
Rating details
 ·  2,726 ratings  ·  207 reviews

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Sadie Hartmann Mother Horror
Jun 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I don't know what people want in horror stories anymore. I read some reviews lately for some awesome horror books and I'm shaking my head like, "What do you people *EVEN* want?!" I think readers need to ask themselves some questions before they decide to pick up a horror story.
Read the back. Decide: Does this sound like something I'm going to enjoy?? Usually, there are clues if this is going to be the right book for you. If you read the back and you're still like, "Hell yes! I want to read abou
Feb 23, 2009 rated it it was ok
Shelves: horror
Words fail me. That's how bad this book is...compared to his other books which are great reads. It was formulaic, the characters were annoying, and the pop-culturish quality of the story was off putting for some reason.

Maybe it's just because Jack Ketchum's Off Season is a brilliant take on inbred cave dwellers clashing with society that anything else pales by comparison.

I wouldn't recommend this book to anyone. Or maybe those just starting out in the horror genre and won't compare this book to
Review pending!
Castaways is about a group of reality TV contestants hidden away on a secluded and supposedly uninhabited island battling it out among themselves to be the sole survivor for the chance to take away a million dollars in prize money. Being a Brian Keene book things are bound to go wrong and before too long the contestants are battling for survival in the truest sense. Having to deal with a massive storm, a homicidal contestant and then inbred cannibals makes for one terrifying and goose bump-induc ...more
Jun 20, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Review to follow...
Feb 27, 2013 rated it liked it
Castaways by Brian Keene is a fun “Survivor” type novel in which the game gets a little bit sideways…and then the wheels come completely off. It is a tongue in cheek horror novel that reads very quick with a quirky cast of characters and no shortage of blood and guts. If you are looking to read something that is not too “hardcore” and has a few laughs then I think that you will enjoy Castaways. I did.
Jul 03, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: books-i-own
That was a really good book. Just the thought that he wrote that story for Richard Laymon's dedication was really cool & the story he tells about how he came up with the book was really neat & any Laymon fan would like & I would recommend this to all Laymon fans. The characters were like able the story was creative & there were some really funny moments in the book. Defiantly another good read from Keene!
Vicki Willis
Oct 28, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: z-2018, brian-keene
What fun this one was! It was about a Survivor type reality show set on an island where the contestents find out they are not alone! It was a fast read that had a lot of action and humor in it. I read it in two sittings. I enjoyed the variety of characters and their humanistic response to the environment. The author wrote a note at the end explaining how he came up with the idea and how he used it to honor Richard Laymon. Good stuff! This is the first book of Brian Keene that I have read, but it ...more
Apr 01, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: bloodletting-own
This hardcover edition is numbered 62 of 300 copies signed by Brian Keene.
Veronica Morfi
Oct 30, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Very intense and gruesome. I thoroughly enjoyed it. Especially since it's the Halloween season (not that it makes much difference to me since I am always into horror) :)
May 06, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: horror
Why read: Reality TV and horror? Sold.

What impressed me: Castaways was just great horror. It was scary and gross and kept me totally involved the whole story. I loved the mix of both human and inhuman evil out to get the castaways. I also loved the reality TV angle and how some of the character's personalities changed once things went bad and the cameras were off. I was completely impressed by Castaways and how it really used the Reality TV situation as opposed to it feeling completely gimicky.

Jan 24, 2009 rated it really liked it
I won't say that this is Keene's strongest work... but it certainly is one of the more fun books in his cannon. Take a bunch of stereotypical reality TV people, slap them on a deserted island a la Survivor, and then add in some cannibal pygmies... great stuff.

I really hate reality TV, so I balked at first when I realized that it was at the center of the plot of the book. But Keene has created some fun characters to follow through the almost 300 pages of this tale. There is substantial gore and a
more like 3.5/4, review to come b/c I'm lazy right now
Aug 18, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a fun, quick read. Keene throws monsters into a reality-tv setting, a premise that mirrors the usual slasher set-up. The prose is clean and vivid, and the plot is well-balanced with quiet moments and bouts of gory killings. I dug the monsters, and I like how Keene stacked the odds against the protagonists. The story was brutal enough that I had no idea who might survive, or whether Keene was just going to kill everyone off. My main criticism is that Keene chose to include rape as one of ...more
David Church
Jun 01, 2015 rated it liked it
I really liked the concept of this book - a horror version of the reality show Survivor. But somehow the execution and lack of likeable characters just didn’t get me too excited (I was really pulling for all the characters to die). It had some moments I did enjoy and it was a quick read. I did like the homage to Richard Laymon though. Not my favorite Keene book by far.
Zakary McGaha
Jun 17, 2019 rated it did not like it
3 stars for the book, which is fun (but nowhere near as good as Conqueror Worms, which is the best Keene book I’ve read), minus 2 stars for the fucking “author’s note” at the end. (NOTE: This is for the og Leisure mass-market paperback)
Stephan van der Linde
Oct 23, 2010 rated it really liked it
This story resembles The Robinson Crusoe show with competitors and a deserted, lost island as residence.

A tropical storm prevents the show to continue, and during that storm, the competitors are all on different places.
But they are not alone......

Men got butchered and women held as captives, to being raped and impregnate.

The describing of the island and surroundings are detailled. The group (as always) dislike each other and try to manipulate whenever they can. Just as every real-life show.

Oct 07, 2015 rated it liked it
Bloody, gory horror novel. The author takes a mish-mash of reality show contestants on a deserted island and then throws lots of twists and turns in their way. The contestants fit into the usual categories - the author even describes them as their stereotypes (boy/girl-next door, stoner, black girl, black guy, etc). Then he mixes in a cyclone, a domestic terrorist, and a tribe of missing link sub-humans bent on murdering the men and raping the women. It is (mostly) a gore fest and I like more ps ...more
Reese Copeland
Jan 03, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I enjoyed this book primarily because it was envisioned as a "pre-quel" for the Beast House Series by Richard Laymon. I think it was a good story to pay homage to that series. There is some character development, although not above and beyond anything you would expect from any other book. There is a bit of a side story in the main story involving a group called "the Sons of the Constitution", but it really doesn't go much of anywhere, which was disappointing. I enjoy Keene's style and his moment ...more
Kevin Lucia
Jan 10, 2009 rated it really liked it
Another Keene thriller - fast-paced, tense, gore galore - some good, exciting, horrible fun.
Katie Kenig
Oct 10, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: horror
This is a super-fast, super-horrifying read.

I love horror novels, but I kind of hate gore. I think I just like the adrenaline rush of being scared. Usually I have to skim the icky parts (kind of like how I close my eyes in horror movies when it gets too bloody). I was pleasantly surprised when I barely had to skim at all in the first half of this book.

But then, yeah, I skimmed a lot of the last half, which is probably why it was such a fast read!

Castaways is the thinly veiled story of the TV sho
Kurt Criscione
Sep 16, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: horror, favorites
Keene's Tribute to Laymon has a reality show getting destroyed on an island by the natives, Loved it.
Twerking To Beethoven
May 04, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Ah, this was fun for the whole family: blood, guts, horny apes and a selfish bastard.
Mark Hodder
Nov 24, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: read-in-2017
Imagine the reality show SURVIVOR was unwittingly filmed on an island that was inhabited by a race of violent hominids. That’s what Brian Keene has done here but, unfortunately, he doesn’t make the best of it. The plot could just as easily involve shipwreck survivors on an island of vampires, or prospectors on an island of zombies, or holidaymakers at an exclusive resort on an island of killer rabbits. There’s nothing groundbreaking here, nothing original, and while it’s entertaining enough, it ...more
Steven Montano
Jul 27, 2018 rated it really liked it
A white-knuckle ride. Mr. Keene can write a hell of a story.
Glen Seary
May 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Sun, sand, and lots of death. Read if you have strong stomach
Daniel Russell
I'll be honest and open myself up to a little criticism straight off the bat. I didn't like The Rising. There. I said it. Zombie fans are very passionate about books they like, and Keene's The Rising was well received. It didn't do anything for me.

Sorry, Brian.

But that didn't put me off snatching up a copy of Castaways when I saw it in the bookstore here (and this is quite an achievement. The bookstore is tiny and doesn't stock much horror at all. But then I saw Leisure titles. LEISURE! Whoo!)
Chris Velazquez
Oct 07, 2016 rated it did not like it
This was the third book I got from Brian Keene, because again, the way he writes the synopsis of the book makes it sound like it will be fun, interesting, thrilling, but most of all, entertaining. Shame that he can't bring the same energy to the actual book as he does to the synopsis.

The book starts interestingly enough with a bit of background look on what it entails to film a Survivor style of reality show, and it seems that season would've sucked in terms of variety, as it begins when there a
Melissa Helwig
Feb 13, 2009 rated it liked it
Shelves: horror
Castaways is a reality show like Survivor. But the contestants don't know they're sharing an island with beasts. And since there are no other animals on the island, the monsters plan to have a great feast of human meat. But that's just for the men. They have something else in store for the women - they're planning to breed with them to save their dying, inbred species.

The plot isn't very original, but I was willing to overlook that because I love Brian Keene. You can definitely tell that it's an
Scott Emerson
Mar 08, 2010 rated it really liked it
Reality TV has been ripe for genre deconstruction, practically from the moment it entered the public consciousness. With its cachet of conflicting personalities, frequent premises involving isolation, and of course the inherent voyeuristic delight that drives it, the format is tailor-made for sharp-witted horror authors. Taking its cue from SURVIVOR, Brian Keene's CASTAWAYS is among the first to explore this new territory, expanding his novella from 2004's FEAR OF GRAVITY to novel length.

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BRIAN KEENE writes novels, comic books, short fiction, and occasional journalism for money. He is the author of over forty books, mostly in the horror, crime, and dark fantasy genres. His 2003 novel, The Rising, is often credited (along with Robert Kirkman’s The Walking Dead comic and Danny Boyle’s 28 Days Later film) with inspiring pop culture’s current interest in zombies. Keene’s novels have be ...more
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