Anna and her little brother Alex are on holiday camping on a small island with their parents, but things happen that Anna never expected and struggles to understand – and she is left to look after her brother indefinitely. Alternately caring for and getting angry with Stick, she pushes through both the physical and mental journey of surviving.
The narrative voice is the main thing in this book. Anna is young, probably about five, and the story is related to us wholly in her present tense, childish understanding. She flips between what is happening currently and her knowledge of life at home from her family, her neighbours, her friends and her neighbour’s dog. This leaves the reader to fill in the gaps of what is really happening, and an understanding of the past of the family gradually becomes clear as the story progresses.