New to You (12): Lindsay Reviews The Summer of Chasing Mermaids by Sarah Ockler {+ a giveaway}

Welcome to New to You!

This idea came along last year when I was supporting Lauren Miller’s newest book All Things New and I asked Kelsey to read and review Parallel, a book I have read more than once. I didn’t really get it going until December when I offered people the chance to sign up to read and review a book that has been a favorite of mine that they have never read. I got a great response and I’m happy to tell you (minus January) you will see a New to You post twice a month.

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Next up for New to You is Lindsay, @bookiecrumbles on Twitter. Linds is going to be sharing her thoughts on The Summer of Chasing Mermaids. I don’t know about you but I originally was terrified to read this one because the concept sounds odd, but Sarah blew me away and in the end it is now a favorite book of mine. Let’s see what Linds thought!

New to You (12): Lindsay Reviews The Summer of Chasing Mermaids by Sarah Ockler {+ a giveaway}The Summer of Chasing Mermaids by Sarah Ockler
Published by Simon Pulse
Published: June 7, 2016
Buy on Amazon
Add to Goodreads
five-stars

From the bestselling author of Twenty Boy Summer comes a “compelling and original” (Kirkus Reviews) novel about a talented singer that 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 suppresses 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 had no idea what to expect from this book when Andi asked me to read it. I didn’t even read the synopsis before starting it, I trusted Andi that much. I did read another of Ockler’s books, Twenty Boy Summer, and loved it, so I suspected I would enjoy this one quite a bit as well…. And I did! I was pleasantly surprised that it was based on The Little Mermaid, especially since that is my favorite Disney movie. The similarities to the original source material, and the deviations that Ockler made were excellent, and provided a truly great reading experience.

First of all, The Summer of Chasing Mermaids is an excellent summer read, and I’m glad Andi had me read it in June. I loved the writing and the prose throughout the book, both were absolutely gorgeous. Elyse’s writing style and poems were amazing, and one of my favorite parts of the story.

I truly enjoyed reading about Elyse’s journey to find herself again. The contrast Ockler showed in losing one’s physical and metaphorical voice was fantastic, and I loved how she compared the two of them. One of my other favorite aspects of the story was the slow burn romance with Christian. He was a complicated love interest, and I liked reading about his family and issues aside from the race. Speaking of his family, Sebastian was awesome! Such a fun (non-annoying) little brother. The relationship between the brothers was one of my favorite things in the entire story.

Ockler does an excellent job exploration a variety of relationships: parental, sibling, extended family, friendships, and romantic. They are all interesting and complicated in their own way, especially Elyse’s relationship with Kirby. I liked how their relationship evolved throughout the story. I also enjoyed Elyse’s new friendship with Vanessa. Both Kirby and Vanessa challenged Elyse in ways that she needed (even if one instance annoyed me…).

Underneath the overlying story of Elyse’s journey is the discussion of mermaids themselves, which was interesting and provided great background for many aspects of the story.

I thoroughly enjoyed this book, thanks Andi for having me read it!

Giveaway ends at 11:59pm EST on July 5, 2018. It is US ONLY!

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Thanks Lindsay for signing up for New to You! So happy you enjoyed your second Sarah Ockler book!

My The Summer of Chasing Mermaids review.

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Helen’s Jewels…a Review

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Helen’s Jewels is an online jewelry site that sells a variety of different jewelry pieces. They have everything from necklaces to earrings to rings to pendents. Helen’s Jewels though does more than just sell jewelry. Every sale sends a percentage to a Non-Profit organization to help raise awareness of healthy living. Find out more HERE.

What does this have to do with Andi’s ABCs I’m sure you are all asking. Well about a month ago I was contacted by Helen with an offer of a collaboration. Having looked over the pieces and more about the company I was happy to help. Helen had me selected a handful of piece which she so kindly sent me to wear and review for all of my lovely readers.

Since this is mainly a book blog I decided to add a book spin to the 4 pieces I got by pairing them with the main character of a book that I think would wear the item.

helen2Hematite Spike Stone Stretch Bracelet
I’m not one to wear a lot of silver on a normal basis, but when I saw this item on Helen’s Jewels I knew I had to see it. It is fun and sparkly but not too much. It has a heavy feel to it as it is hematite which is a tab heavier of a metal. I has small wrists so sometimes bracelet fit is a struggle but I didn’t have any trouble with this one. And I found the product very comfortable.

When pairing a book with it I had to go with my girl Reagan from Open Road Summer by Emery Lord. The sparkle and spikes just seemed like something she would wear. It was girly enough but had that edge that we all know and love about Reagan.

Verdict: A piece I’m happy to have in my jewelry box.

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Gold Hammered Stud Earrings
I used to wear earrings a lot more than I have been so when I saw these I figured it would be the perfect time to start wearing them again. What I liked about these is the hammered look to the gold. Even though they are a pretty simple piece that gave them a little more interest than gold gold would have. Also I liked that they weren’t too heavy or too big on my earlobes.

For a book I had to go with Isla from Isla and the Happily Every After by Stephanie Perkins. Isla is a classic girl by nature. She likes roses and simple things. Her most extravagant jewelry item is her compass necklace. When I saw these I could 100% see her wearing these on a date with Josh or even just for the school year.

Verdict: I’ll be wearing earrings more.

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Aged Gold Multi Feather Necklace
I love a good long necklace. I like pairing them with simple, classic dresses so I was excited when I got this one. I loved the feather detail too it mixed with the beads and the extra long chain. The feathers are made of a really light material. Probably not the longest lasting of necklace material but it wasn’t heavy so that was a plus. The only downside was that it was loud. It made a lot of noise when I walked because of the material and the length of the chain.

I pictured Elisa from The Girl of Fire and Thorns by Rae Carson for this necklace. I’m not really sure why but to me it seemed like something she would have liked to own and would wear.

Verdict: If it wasn’t so loud I would wear it more often.

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Gold Variety Charm Bangle Bracelet
Alex and Ani bracelets are my go to for arm wear. When I saw this one on Helen’s site I loved it. I knew it would fit right in with my Alex and Ani’s and it did. It is lighter than the Alex and Ani’s and makes extra noise because of this, but it still was a great fit and I liked it a lot. The turquoise charm was a nice pop of color too.

As for the character, it was one person and one person only that I could think of for this bracelet, Elyse for The Summer of Chasing Mermaids by Sarah Ockler. The flower charm and the turquoise are really what stood out for me for Elyse to wear this. It has a laid back beach vibe and that is exactly what I got when I read Elyse. This would definitely be something that would adorn her arm for sure.

Verdict: My favorite of the 4.

I would like to thank Helen for this opportunity and for sending me these lovely pieces to review for all of you. Helen has so kindly offered to give my readers 20% off their first purchase on her site. If you are interested please use the code FIRSTBUY20

Here are two of the items I got worn in real life.

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*pieces provided by Helen’s Jewels but opinions are my own.

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Blog Tour Review: Summer of Chasing Mermaids – Sarah Ockler {giveaway}

Blog Tour Review: Summer of Chasing Mermaids - Sarah Ockler {giveaway}

 Blog Tour Review: Summer of Chasing Mermaids – Sarah Ockler {giveaway}The Summer of Chasing Mermaids by Sarah Ockler
Published by Simon Pulse
Buy on Amazon
Add to Goodreads
five-stars

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!

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About Sarah Ockler

Sarah Ockler is the bestselling author of young adult novels, including #scandal, The Book of Broken Hearts, Bittersweet, Fixing Delilah, and the critically acclaimed Twenty Boy Summer, a YALSA Teens' Top Ten nominee and IndieNext List pick. Her latest, The Summer of Chasing Mermaids, hits the shelves in June 2015.

Sarah is a champion cupcake eater, coffee drinker, night person, and bookworm. When she's not writing or reading at home in Washington, she enjoys taking pictures, hugging trees, and road-tripping through the country with her husband, Alex.

Follow the Summer of Chasing Mermaids Blog Tour and don’t miss anything! Click on the banner to see the tour schedule.

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giveaway

 GIVEAWAY:

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

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#MermaidMonday: The Summer of Chasing Mermaids Giveaway

You all know what a HUGE fan of Sarah Ockler I am. I mean I mention it as often as I can. 🙂 Well in case you don’t know, Sarah has a new book coming out on June 2nd. The Summer of Chasing Mermaids.

#MermaidMonday: The Summer of Chasing Mermaids GiveawayThe Summer of Chasing Mermaids by Sarah Ockler
Published by Simon Pulse
Buy on Amazon
Add to Goodreads

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…

I will be posting my review for this fabulous book on Saturday May 30th, but today is all about one thing…the words.

Sarah has written some of my favorite quotes in her books. My all time favorite is still from her first book Twenty Boy Summer…”I’m fine, thanks for not asking.”. She has this magical ability to put pen onto paper and wow me with her prose.

So today I am sharing with you one of the 3 quotes I highlighted when reading. Each of the quotes stood out to me, but this one really touched my soul in a place all beautiful writing can.

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When you read the book you will see just how perfect this quote is for Elyse’s story.

And that brings us to the giveaway. This one is a little different as today is all about the quote graphics which Sarah is a huge fan of. Below are the rules:

1) Share the above graphic. You can Tweet it, Instagram it, reblog it, Facebook it, Tumblr it, Pin it. What ever one you like to use, use. That is up to you. And can use all 5 options if you would like.

2) Use the hashtag #MermaidMonday

3) Tag me in the post. I’m AndiABCs on all forms of social media so I should be easy to tag. And if you can’t find my pages use the social media buttons on the side bar. After you have done this leave your email in the comments so I can contact you should you win.

4) US ONLY. Sorry guys, but rules are rules.

5) 5 Entries person. I will check so don’t try to sneak by.

And now you want to know what you are winning I’m sure. Well one lucky winner will get a finished hardcover of The Summer of Chasing Mermaids and a seashell jewelry dish (which I personally love). Contest goes until 11:59pm EST on 6/2/15.

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Tour Schedule:

10:00am EST
Andi’s ABCs

12:00pm EST
Novel Novice

2:00pm EST
Uncreatively Zoey

3:00pm EST
Elizziebooks

4:00pm EST
Words Like Silver

5:00pm EST
BookCrushin

6:00pm EST (First 2 chapters of TSOCM)
Perpetual Page Turner

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