I received a copy from Edelweiss
I wasn’t entirely sure what to expect with this one, it was a bit of coverlust more than anything about it that caught my attention and I snagged it as soon as I saw it on Edelweiss as a read it now. I’d forgotten what it was about by the time I finally got around to read it. Pleasantly surprised to find how unique this novel was and how much I enjoyed and how unexpected the plot was. It’s a turn of the century historical set in the Isle of Man.
The main character lives in small island village steeped mythology regarding the sea and the creatures within and the strange fairy folk (think more traditional type fairies, Little Folk, mysterious and hardly ever seen but a somewhat worrying presence).
Bridey, the main character, just wants to escape from the island and go experience London and the mainland. She has a close tightknit family of a number of siblings, a couple of best friends, though her male friend Lugh’s attention seem to be changing slightly towards her. The town even has a creepy old lady who lives, Morag, alone with a mysterious past known as the local witch.
Bridey is haunted by the mysterious death of her grandfather. She was there when it happened, the official cause is drowning, but she knows there’s more to it. Problem is no one believes her. Not helped when Bridey is looking for work and her mother sends her to go apprentice to Morag. Then girls start disappearing and turning up dead.
Along with the arrival of a strange boy washed up on the beach. The boy has horrible wounds and no memory of who he is. Bridey takes him home to help nurse him back to health, as he has no name, she names him Fynn.
Beautifully written, almost lyrical, and completely captivating, the mythology of the sea beasts and magic of the isle is woven in and it’s absolutely fascinating. The cast of characters is pretty incredible, from the stubborn townsfolk who can be at once giving and incredibly small minded, and of course there’s much more to local witch Morag than anyone thought to look at.
And the slow build of trust and friendship between Bridey and Fynn is very well done and believable. It’s not insta-love, it takes time and work. Coupled with the mystery of the disappearing girls it all mixes together and works incredibly well. It’s not just focused on Bridey and Fynn, I really liked the inclusion of Bridey’s family and her friends and how they all cope differently with the events in the novel as they unfold.
The plot has a few surprising twists and turns and it’s impossible to guess, and the end really threw me and was completely unexpected. Some of the ending was a little hard to follow, I had to go back and read some of the scenes twice to make sure I was following the plot correctly, but the initial twist at the end was still a big surprise.
All in all a fantastic read and definitely an author I look forward to reading more of.
I received a copy from Netgalley.
The mystery aspect of this book was what initially appealed to me. Though I did feel it got rather silly towards the end once the paranormal element came fully into play and was finally explained. For the most part it was a pretty good book, intruiging premise....on a mysterious note Sloane goes to the town of Willow Falls to seek answers about the car accident at killed her mother when she was a child. She eventually meets Bri, who looks indentical to her. Both girls are confused and there is also the hint of a strange and powerful connection between the two of them.
One thing I did particularly like was the style of the writing, which I noticed has been pointed out in several of the goodreads reviews I've read. Rather straightforward and almost blunt. Likeabke characters who when faced with a mystery dealt with the twisty turns without being idiotic about it. Along with the are the two identical girls actually twins plot there was a strange older guy, a rich guy with a dark past who was a friend of Bri's, and a mean girl Chloe who shows up every now and then saying bitchy things. Chloe turned out to be pretty awesome towards the end of the book and I would love to see her have her own novel.
Things get petty complex pretty fast made worse by secrets up on secrets, dead bodies, a disturbing animal death and the disappearance of Bri's mom. All pretty good stuff. Until it got to the answers and the paranormal part, which for me turned pretty silly. It was fairly creative it its world building, I will give it that, but the dialogue from the bad guy once it was revealed who the killer was was laughable and knocked it down a star for me.
Open ended, with a lot of possibilities for a conintuing series. Even though I found it a little silly, this is probably a series I will be looking to continue.
Thank you to Netgalley and Carina UK for approving my request to view the title.
I found a YA mermaid book I didn't hate!
This is one of those books I've had on my kindle for a few years now and never got around to reading. Something I picked at random on a slow afternoon. My policy with stuff I've had for ages on my kindle is if I get past the first 10% without wanting to throw something the book is a keeper. I haven't had a lot of luck with YA books with underwater themes. But this one got my attention right off.
While the California surfer lingo was more than a little irritating, the story got my attention pretty quickly. The mythology was pretty unique as well. There were certain times particularly when the under water world was introduced that things turned pretty ludicrous, but I was actually able to over look it and enjoy the story (even if it was absurd).
I think it partly helped a great deal that I really liked the main character, Tempest. (Despite her having a rather silly and irritating name). She was spunky and attitudey without being over the top about it. Moody at times, but also quite logical and smart at times as well. The mythology was rather unique as well. In this case, the girl is well aware of her mermaid heritage through her absentee mother's side and has a choice at 17 to either give into the call of the sea or remain human. She handles the onset of new powers surprisingly well. She does have her freakouts and moments where she has a temper tantrum, but for a sixteen/seventeen year old it was pretty well done. I didn't get too annoyed with her.
She has a pretty great family dynamic, Dad and two younger brothers. Absentee mother, (this is explained and plays a rather important part in the whole mermaid mythology thing). She's an accomplished surfer, has a steady boyfriend (who's a bit of an over possessive ass). Until a mysterious sexy new comer comes along. It was a tad bit insta-lovey when the new guy shows up. She has one chance meeting with him under odd circumstances in a rainstorm and then suddenly he's everywhere and her feelings are changing towards the boyfriend.
This is one of those rare cases (for this reader at least) where I was able to overlook the insta love because the story was so well written. Its got some great action scenes, some romance. And as I mentioned, once the underwater world comes into play it does get a little silly in parts. Again, I could over look it. I still wanted to know where the story was going.
All in all, a fun read with unique mythology and great characters. A series I am definitely looking forward to continue.
I received a copy from Netgalley.
Not for me. DNFing at 30%. I absolutely loved the first book in this series, but the second one isn't doing anything for me. Its not like its badly written or edited or anything like that. I'm just not into it at all. I'm not connecting to the characters, and not really liking them much.
After how much I loved Cora in the first book, in this installment I'm finding her annoying. And very self absorbed, especially how she's whining because she's upset Rory didn't want to see her after she's practically ignored him for a year. Urg. Annoying to say the least. The best friend Rosie is irritating. She sticks her nose into something that's nothing to do with her because of a hot boy and then complains when she doesn't believe the real reason for the trip to Ireland. I'm assuming at some point this will change, but for now, I'm not really interested much in reading more and finding out.
While I would certainly read something else by this author, this book didn't work for me.