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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…
I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
I have been a Sarah Ockler fan since I read Twenty Boy Summer in 2011. Since reading that one my love for her has only grown. But I must confess that I was scared when I read the concept for this story. You see The Little Mermaid is my all-time favorite Disney movie. It has a special place in my heart for reason and I just couldn’t see how it would translate to inspire a book. I mean I knew I would read it because it is a Sarah book, but I was scared that I wouldn’t love it. Well SHAME ON ME! The Summer of Chasing Mermaids was FANTASTIC and the inspiration translated beautifully.
The Summer of Chasing Mermaids is about Elyse, the youngest of 6 sisters from Tobago, that had the voice of an angel. She was slated to be a star until an accident took that from her but taking her voice. Needing to get away she heads to the Oregon coast to stay with a family friend. While there Elyse has to deal with what her new life will be now that she can’t sing or talk, and what this means for her and her place in her family. As she navigates the grey skies of Oregon and gets closer to her neighbor Christian Kane , who she knows she should stay away from, she must figure out how to be heard when she has something to say and how to let the past pain go so she can move on to the now.
I loved this book more than I could imagine. Elyse’s story hit me hard for some reason. My heart just broke for this poor girl that was alive but had her whole life taken from her. She didn’t know how to fit in with her family anymore, or how her family fit in with her so she ran. She took refuge with people that knew her but didn’t know her and she tried to fit in. But Elyse was never about fitting in. It was about her standing out and finding how to voice what she felt without being able to talk. It was about opening herself up and allowing herself to feel and even love and to trust in herself and the sea.
What I really loved about this book beside Elyse was the side characters. Christian, Lemon, Vanessa, Kirby and Sebastian. They are all vitale to Elyse’s growth and her growing trust and they are used in a way that is befitting to the story. They aren’t just there as background or to move the story along. They are 100% the support characters that Elyse needed to give her the push and the drive. Between Christian open Eylse’s heart to love, Lemon opening her home to this lost girl, Vanessa and Kirby showing what it is like to go after what you want/believe in and the adorable Sebastian (read the book for him alone) opening Elyse’s up to life, you have a perfect cast of characters that only added to the story.
I don’t know how Ockler did it but what she did with The Summer of Chasing Mermaids was amazing. She took the best parts of Twenty Boy Summer, Bittersweet and Fixing Delilah and made me fall in love with her writing and storytelling at a whole new level. The book is emotional and real and will make you smile and then break down in tears. It is a journey of a girl trying to fine her place in the world and I promise you won’t be sorry you read it. You may be singing The Little Mermaid songs in your head, but your heart will be filled with love. READ IT!
Follow the Summer of Chasing Mermaids Blog Tour and don’t miss anything! Click on the banner to see the tour schedule.
Details: Win (1) of (2) Sarah Ockler’s prize packs that include a hardcover copy of The Summer of Chasing Mermaids and paperback copies of #Scandal, The Book of Broken Hearts and Bittersweet (US Only)
Giveaway starts on MAY 27th and finishes on JUNE 8th