A dark shape wobbles beneath the water, getting closer to the beach. You’re ninety-nine percent sure it’s just seaweed drifting on the currents – but what if it isn’t?
What if it’s one of those big saltwater crocodiles Harrison warned you about?
You look up and down the beach. There are crushed shells, dead jellyfish and a shapeless mountain which might once have been an epic sandcastle – but no people.
No one to ask for advice. Nobody who will call for help if something happens to you. You didn’t even tell anyone you were going surfing, which now seems like a mistake.
The clock is ticking. In the 30 minutes from the time you notice the shape in the water life as you know is over. You are on your own. Your decisions will be life and death ones, and not just for you. Get it wrong and at the very least, you die. Get it right, you may save lives, save livelihoods, be a hero. But this is no game. This is deadly serious. There are multiple possible endings – which will you choose?
Jack Heath is known for action-packed stories and this series of Choose Your Own Ending stories is no exception. Who know there were so many ways to die? Or live? Full of extreme options, every horrible ending man-made and ‘natural’ element seems to have you in the crosshairs. The stories are told in second person and present tense and the pace is fierce. Recommended for mid-primary readers looking for some choice in how the story ends. Will also appeal to older fans of wild adventures.
Countdown to Danger: Shockwave, Jack Heath
review by Claire Saxby, Children’s author and bookseller