Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Release Date: June 2nd, 2015
Genres: Contemporary, Romance, YA
Source: For tour
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From the bestselling author of Twenty Boy Summer, a talented singer loses her ability to speak after a tragic accident, leading her to a postcard-perfect seaside town to find romance.
The youngest of six talented sisters, Elyse d’Abreau was destined for stardom—until a boating accident took everything from her. Now, the most beautiful singer in Tobago can’t sing. She can’t even speak.
Seeking quiet solitude, Elyse accepts a friend’s invitation to Atargatis Cove. Named for the mythical first mermaid, the Oregon seaside town is everything Elyse’s home in the Caribbean isn’t: An ocean too cold for swimming, parties too tame for singing, and people too polite to pry—except for one.
Christian Kane is a notorious playboy—insolent, arrogant, and completely charming. He’s also the only person in Atargatis Cove who doesn’t treat Elyse like a glass statue. He challenges her to express herself, and he admires the way she treats his younger brother Sebastian, who believes Elyse is the legendary mermaid come to life.
When Christian needs a first mate for the Cove’s high-stakes Pirate Regatta, Elyse reluctantly stows her fear of the sea and climbs aboard. The ocean isn’t the only thing making waves, though—swept up in Christian’s seductive tide and entranced by the Cove’s charms, Elyse begins to wonder if a life of solitude isn’t what she needs. But changing course again means facing her past. It means finding her inner voice. And scariest of all, it means opening her heart to a boy who’s best known for breaking them...
If I were to list all the reasons why I think everyone should read The Summer of Chasing Mermaids, we’d be here till we all were just a pile of skin and bones. Since I don’t want that to happen, here’s just 5 of the main reasons why Sarah Ockler’s new book is glorious:
1. It’s a contemporary novel that’s a loose retelling of The Little Mermaid. Do I need to say more? Surely that has already got you jumping up and down in your seat because that’s exactly what I did when I first laid my eyes on that synopsis. And trust me, the execution of it is absolutely spot on, and Ockler’s beauteous writing only makes this even more joyous to read. Honestly, I just didn’t want this book to end, and it’s been quite a while since a book has made me feel that way!
2. There’s a POC main character. HELL YES THAT’S RIGHT PEOPLES. Too often, we get books that are dubbed “diverse” because there’s that one unimportant, side character that is of a different racial background. But not here, people. The main character, Elyse, is a person of colour and she completely lost her voice because of a recently tragic accident. That, is what I call a diverse book. I did take a little while to be fully engaged in Elyse’s narrative, but when I did, my heart truly broke for her. Her whole world revolved around singing, and when she lost her voice, that door down that path just slammed her right in the face.
3. It’s not just a fluffy summer read – there’s a lot of deeper messages interwoven. Don’t be mistaken. This isn’t your generic fluffy summer read with a cutesy romance and about a girl who finds herself over the summer break. This is not just about a girl whose dreams were ripped away from her – this is also the story of Sebastian, (the love interest’s little brother) who is enamoured by chasing mermaids and is teased about it by all the other men around him; and at it’s very core, this is a story about finding your voice again, your stand, in this ever-changing world.
4. There’s a lot of swooning. Expect yourself to make some incoherent sounds that in reality probably sound like squawking. Why? Because Christian Kane. HE IS MINE, BACK OFF PEOPLE. I didn’t like Christian to begin with because he’s a player but you really do get to know him throughout the novel and I was shipping him and Elyse so SO hard before I knew it. Sarah Ockler certainly didn’t forget to bring her fantastic romances to the table in The Summer of Chasing Mermaids.
5. Also, this book comes with a lot of sex positive and pro feminism vibes. Sarah Ockler, my respect for you has only increased once again, because you addressed what many authors don’t want to address. So THANK YOU.
In all, The Summer of Chasing Mermaids is a perfect novel for the summer with it’s brilliant characters (main characters and sides), glorious ship, realistic portrayal of teenage sex and it’s strong underlying message about finding your voice. This is what all contemporary novels should be like.
~Thank you Simon and Schuster for providing the review copy!~
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