A group of people, from different countries and with greatly differing personalities, board a plane in an exotic locale. The plane goes off course, malfunctioning and crashing into an unidentified wilderness far from any known civilization. The survivors band together for protection and guidance, and a natural leader emerges. But before they can be rescued the survivors are approached by a group of people who have dwelt in that strange land for generations, people who possess uncanny knowledge, an abundance of secrets, and – possibly – the key to immortality itself. Yet while some of the survivors want to remain in this hidden utopia, surrendering all desire for rescue, others are desperate to return to their former lives. And when one of the survivors does escape – and subsequently comes to regret his choice – he finds the way back to the mysterious civilization hidden and despairs of ever finding it again.
Sound familiar? It may, but it isn’t the plot of ABC’s hit series Lost which returns this week for its fifth season. It is actually a summary of James Hilton’s 1933 novel Lost Horizon. This enigmatic, moving story of a Himalayan Shangri-La and the group of outsiders who stumble upon it will haunt you long after you’ve passed the last page. It’s a must-read for Lost fans – as are other tales of castaways, survivors and mysterious, hidden lands such as Lord of the Flies, Robinson Crusoe, Stranger in a Strange Land, Heart of Darkness, and Gulliver’s Travels. Come to the library to find these and other Lost-alikes and prepare yourself for some mind-bending, time-warping, twist-turning adventure!