Convince Me To Read (30): The Summer of Chasing Mermaids by Sarah Ockler

Posted March 4, 2017 by Jamie in Convince Me To Read, Features, Reviews // 0 Comments

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About Convince Me To Read Reviews

While we all have fairly similar tastes, sometimes we need a little push to read a certain book. The Convince Me to Read Review will be a review of the novel plus a section on why we think the other would enjoy it.

Convince Me To Read (30): The Summer of Chasing Mermaids by Sarah OcklerThe Summer of Chasing Mermaids by Sarah Ockler
Published by Simon Pulse on June 2nd 2015
ISBN: 1481401270
Pages: 399

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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...


Jamie’s review

I really liked this book. It is probably my favourite that I’ve read of the retellings for #12DaysOfDiversity that I have hit up this week. But it still wasn’t exactly a retelling, rather it had some of the same characters and a similar theme. I would say it is loosely based on The Little Mermaid rather than being a strict retelling. And it worked for me, but I am a sucker for a good contemporary novel and this really filled that gap for me.

I thought that it was a tad long, like maybe 50 or so pages too long, especially since the ending didn’t really clear anything up. But I really enjoyed reading it. Ockler has a great writing style and I found myself immersed in the pages of the book to the point that I didn’t want to put it down. I had a lot of appointments that I had to wait for and read it in the waiting rooms and finished it within two hours because it was just that good. Once you start, you won’t want to put it down.

I so loved that not only was Elyse empowered without her voice, but she was empowered in her sexuality and there was on screen masturbation and sex! Because guess what! GIRLS DO THAT! It was so awesome to see that in a YA book and I will definitely be recommending this to people who are looking for that. (And telling those who don’t want to read about that to stay away) But I love Elyse and her story, struggle, and life felt so real to me that I could see her right beside me. She was a great main character and even though she couldn’t speak, she told her story and had such presence within the story. I would love a NA companion novel to this, just saying.

I liked the female friendships in it as well, and thought they felt realistic with their ups and downs and discussing their lives and their relationships. I liked that Vanessa, Kirby, and Elyse felt like they could trust one another with anything and everything and I really liked that Elyse and Vanessa bonded quickly even though they both had a “thing” with the same guy. GUYS AREN’T WORTH LOSING FRIENDSHIPS OVER, LADIES.

But Christian was great. I liked that he really opened up with Elyse and was so good about consent!!!!! And that they made each other better people!!! IDK I REALLY LIKED SEEING A HEALTHY RELATIONSHIP ON PAGE. It was just really nice to see two young adults (they were both over 18 but okay) who didn’t quite know what they wanted in the future come together to realize that they could make it through anything.

However, like I said above: this wasn’t really a retelling. The characters were there but the story wasn’t even close to being the same. And I was okay with that but I was surprised that this was even considered a retelling tbh. Again, not complaining!! I loved it!!!! But I was disappointed that there weren’t more elements of the original story in this, especially since it was so long. That’s just me though. I definitely recommend it though! Pick it up!

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I bought Dani a copy because I know she is going to love this one. It is everything she wants wrapped up into a book. And MERMAIDS. Mermaids are the best and I am going to make sure Dani knows that and converts to being a mermaid lover.

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