Goodreads Monday: The Fourth Island

Goodreads Monday is a weekly meme where we randomly select a book from our Goodreads To Be Read list and share it with the world. It’s been hosted by Lauren’s Page Turners, but I’m not sure if that blog is active anymore. Please enjoy this preview of what I want to read in the future!


The Fourth Island
by Sarah Tolmie, illustrated by Romina Cai
112 pages
Expected publication date: October 20, 2020

From Goodreads: Dark, mournful, and beautiful, Sarah Tolmie’s The Fourth Island is a moving and unforgettable story of life and death on the hidden Irish island of Inis Caillte.

Huddled in the sea off the coast of Ireland is a fourth Aran Island, a secret island peopled by the lost, findable only in moments of despair. Whether drowned at sea, trampled by the counter-reformation, or exiled for clinging to the dead, no outsiders reach the island without giving in to dark emotion.

Time and again, The Fourth Island weaves a hypnotic pattern with its prose, presaging doom before walking back through the sweet and sour moments of lives not yet lost. It beautifully melds the certainty of loss with the joys of living, drawing readers under like the tide.


I visited the Aran Islands during my trip to Ireland in summer 2016, and it was the highlight of that week. They are these little rocks in the Atlantic Ocean, and while they are small and sparsely populated, they contain a wealth of history and beauty. I still get chills when I remember seeing the Cliffs of Moher rising out of the mist on the ferry back to the mainland and looking straight down the cliff to the ocean below Dún Aonghasa.

So naturally, I want to read even a short book about a magical fourth Aran Island.

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5 thoughts on “Goodreads Monday: The Fourth Island

  1. That’s absolutely awesome when you have that kind of connection and memory of a place featured in a book. I hope you enjoy it!

  2. Thanks! It’s Inis Mor, the largest of the Aran Islands. Large being relative….

    I’m really looking forward to the book! I requested the ARC through NetGalley, but last I knew, if you don’t have a follower count of 1,000+, Tor doesn’t give you the time of day. So we’ll see. But I’m not holding my breath. I’ll probably just have to wait until it comes out.

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