Bad Island
Goodreads ratings
3.98 / 5

"Bad Island" Summary

By Doug TenNapel

graphic novels | 224 pages | Published in 2011

Something on this island is up to no good . . .When Reese is forced to go on a boating trip with his family, the last thing he expects is to be shipwrecked on an island-especially one teeming with weird plants and animals. But what starts out as simply a bad vacation turns into a terrible one, as the castaways must find a way to escape while dodging the island's dangerous inhabitants. With few resources and a mysterious entity on the hunt, each secret unlocked could save them . . . or spell their doom. One thing Reese knows for sure: This is one Bad Island.


Estimated read time: 5 min read

One Sentence Summary

A family's vacation takes a dark turn when they are stranded on a mysterious island filled with dangerous creatures and must work together to survive.

Bad Island by Doug TenNapel: A Captivating Adventure


"Bad Island" by Doug TenNapel is an enthralling graphic novel that takes readers on an unforgettable adventure filled with mystery, danger, and unexpected twists. Released in 2011, this captivating story combines elements of science fiction, fantasy, and suspense to create a unique and compelling narrative. With its richly detailed artwork and engaging storytelling, "Bad Island" offers readers a one-of-a-kind reading experience that will leave them eagerly turning the pages until the very end.

Brief Synopsis

Plot Overview

"Bad Island" unfolds on a remote and seemingly uninhabited island, where a family's vacation takes a sudden turn for the worse. As the family explores the island, they discover a series of bizarre and unexplainable phenomena, including strange creatures and dangerous obstacles. The island itself appears to be alive, presenting the family with a series of challenges that will test their courage, resourcefulness, and bonds with each other.


The story is primarily set on the enigmatic island, which serves as a character in its own right. The island is shrouded in mystery, its landscapes ranging from lush forests to treacherous cliffs and caverns. As the family delves deeper into the heart of the island, they encounter increasingly surreal and otherworldly environments, adding to the sense of wonder and danger that permeates the narrative.

Main Characters

The main characters in "Bad Island" are:

ReeseA curious and resourceful young boy who takes the lead in confronting the challenges of the island.
JanReese's younger sister, who brings a sense of innocence and vulnerability to the story.
Mom & DadThe parents, who must navigate the perils of the island while protecting their children.

Summary of Different Story Points Over Chapters

Chapter 1-3: The Discovery

The family arrives on the island and begins to explore its intriguing landscapes. They encounter strange phenomena and realize that the island is not what it seems.

Chapter 4-6: The Challenges Begin

As they delve deeper into the island, the family faces increasingly perilous obstacles and encounters bizarre creatures. They must rely on their wits and courage to survive.

Chapter 7-9: Unraveling the Mystery

The family uncovers clues about the true nature of the island and its connection to their own lives. They must confront the island's secrets while struggling to stay together and find a way home.

Chapter 10-12: Confronting the Unknown

The family faces the ultimate test as they come face to face with the heart of the island's power. Their determination and love for each other are put to the test as they strive to escape the island's grip.

Main Events

  • The family's arrival on the island and the initial sense of wonder and discovery.
  • Encounters with strange creatures and obstacles that test the family's resolve.
  • Revelations about the island's true nature and its connection to the family's past.
  • The family's ultimate confrontation with the island's power and their struggle to escape its influence.

Themes and Insights


  • Exploration and Discovery: The story emphasizes the thrill and danger of exploring the unknown, both in the physical world and within oneself.
  • Family Bonds: The family's journey on the island serves as a backdrop for exploring the strength of familial love and the challenges that can strain these bonds.
  • Nature vs. Technology: The island's mystical qualities contrast with the family's reliance on modern technology, prompting reflection on the balance between nature and human innovation.


  • The story invites readers to contemplate the resilience of the human spirit and the capacity for growth and adaptation in the face of adversity.
  • It prompts reflection on the interconnectedness of all living things and the profound mysteries that lie beyond the boundaries of human understanding.

Reader's Takeaway

"Bad Island" offers readers a thrilling and thought-provoking journey into a world of mystery and adventure. Through its compelling narrative and striking visuals, the book leaves a lasting impression, inspiring contemplation of the bonds that unite us and the wonders that await those who dare to explore the unknown.


In conclusion, "Bad Island" by Doug TenNapel is a masterfully crafted graphic novel that will captivate readers of all ages with its rich storytelling, imaginative setting, and profound themes. With its blend of suspense, fantasy, and heartfelt storytelling, this book is a must-read for anyone seeking an unforgettable literary adventure.

Bad Island FAQ

  1. What is the genre of 'Bad Island'?

    Bad Island is a graphic novel that falls into the categories of adventure, mystery, and science fiction.

  2. Who is the author of 'Bad Island'?

    The author of 'Bad Island' is Doug TenNapel, a renowned graphic novel creator and illustrator.

  3. What is the main storyline of 'Bad Island'?

    The story follows a family who becomes shipwrecked on an uncharted island and discovers mysterious and dangerous creatures.

  4. Is 'Bad Island' suitable for children?

    While 'Bad Island' is a graphic novel, it is recommended for older children and teenagers due to its adventurous and sometimes intense themes.

  5. Are there any sequels to 'Bad Island'?

    No, 'Bad Island' is a standalone graphic novel and does not have any sequels.