Hi there, Realmers, Marshmallows, Extraterrestrials!
My first book review in 2018! I really liked this book. I got it for Christmas from my mom. *blows kisses of eternal gratefulness to mom* I think this counts for my 2018 reading challenge, but I’m not sure, because I started it in 2017. But I only read like 4 chapters, so…
Anyways, on with the book review!
From the author of the critically acclaimed Wolf Hollow comes a moving story of identity and belonging.
Twelve-year-old Crow has lived her entire life on a tiny, isolated piece of the starkly beautiful Elizabeth Islands in Massachusetts. Abandoned and set adrift on a small boat when she was just hours old, Crow’s only companions are Osh, the man who rescued and raised her, and Miss Maggie, their fierce and affectionate neighbor across the sandbar.
Crow has always been curious about the world around her, but it isn’t until the night a mysterious fire appears across the water that the unspoken question of her own history forms in her heart. Soon, an unstoppable chain of events is triggered, leading Crow down a path of discovery and danger.
Vivid and heart wrenching, Lauren Wolk’s Beyond the Bright Seais a gorgeously crafted and tensely paced tale that explores questions of identity, belonging, and the true meaning of family.
Cover: Guys, the cover is B-E-A-U-T-I-F-U-L!!!!!! Let’s just take a moment to APPRECIATE THIS AWESOME MARSHMALLOW OF A COVER. The sunset is enchanting, especially with the sea reflecting it. The sunset (or sunrise, depending how you look at it) fades in to a gorgeous ombre night sky. The sun and the skiff silhouette in it’s center add the perfect touch, bringing the whole cover together. And don’t forget the feather in the reflection of the sea, which looked odd to me at first, but actually played a big part in the story.
Blurb: The blurb does a great job of summarizing the book in a spoiler-free way, (I can’t stand when books have spoilers in the blurbs) (trust me it’s happened before) but, it was a bit too good at summarizing the book to where my expectations were very high and when I went to read the book I was slightly disappointed.
It would have been a perfect 5 if the blurb didn’t make me a bit disappointed. 😦
Characters (Warning: Some Spoilers!! Read at your own risk!!)
Crow was a great, well thought-out character. I didn’t really see her arc very clearly, though. Her need to find her family was intriguing, her thoughts were provoking, and she was truly unique. I would have liked more description of her appearance as to be able to picture her better, but the plot-necessary details, like her age and the birthmark on her cheek, were mentioned very early in the story. Overall, Crow is a wonderful man character for this book.
Osh was one of my favorite characters, but his backstory was foggy. At the beginning of the book he seemed mysterious, but at the end you were just waiting for the big reveal, who he really was, what his backstory was, but…(spoiler)that never came.(end) (If you want to read the spoiler, copy and paste it in to a word program or you blog editor and change the color to black.) That was really disapointing because I was expecting a whole lot more from this character.
Miss Maggie was a fun character that didn’t play too big of a role in the story but I couldn’t imagine this book without her. She was full of wit, grit, and gut, a great role model for anyone, anywhere.
Nurse Evelyn Morgan was a great character that wasn’t actually “there” on the book but was mentioned many times in the story and was a HUGE part of the plot.
(I’m not sharing my thoughts on the antagonist because the antagonist’s name (and possibly gender) is a spoiler!!)
The characters were very well thought out but I was expecting so much more. Half of this review could have been 5 stars if!! I!! wasn’t!! disapointed!! Plus, I wouldn’t have been half as disappointed if the characters made you expect less. I MEAN COME ON EVERY BOOK HAS THE BIG REVEAL WHY CAN’T IT BE TO THE ONE I (very cleverly, I might add) FIGURED OUT AND THEN IT TURNED OUT TO BE spoiler SOME RANDOM OTHER PERSON!!! end(Again, if you’ve read this book, just highlight the white text.)
The format of this book was the standard chapter book format. I think there was about 42 chapters, each chapter being about 7 pages long, which I think is a good length for this type of novel. The graphics on the chapters were nice, and the brush-font of the first letter in the chapter was cliché but cute. I would have liked to see more creativity with this book’s format, or maybe multiple POVs at least…
The format was average. Pretty good, but could have been better.
I really liked this book, how I got to learn about the Elisabeths and Cuttyhunk and Penikese and the rich history those islands have. I was intrigued by the daring feats Crow performed, seemingly in the antagonist’s grasp, but then she pulls away. The characters were admirable, funny, and well-thought out. However, the well-done blurb (and I don’t mean it was done well!) set high expectations and made this book a slight disapointment. Even though this book isn’t a perfect 5/5, I still recommend reading this book because it is a good balance between an intriguing and relaxing read. And, you may want to read it to see what you think of it!