Days in Bixby, Oklahoma, last a little longer than everywhere else. One hour longer. This hour, between midnight and 1 a.m., exists for those in town who were born precisely at midnight. In this secret hour everyone and everything freezes, except for a small group of local teenagers and a new girl in school, Jessica Day.
Jessica wakes one night in her new home to discover that the world around her has frozen. After some exploration she finds that certain animals are also awake and can travel in the frozen world, but they turn out to be less than friendly. When they attack her she is rescued by fellow “Midnighters” Dess, Rex, and Melissa. They explain that these creatures are “slithers” and “darklings” and that they are the reason the secret hour exists. They created it to hide from humans, technology, and the things that can destroy them.
The Midnighters tell Jessica that each of them possesses a special power and they assure her that she has a power as well, which she will soon discover. The following night Jessica meets the final Midnighter, Jonathan. He is on the outs with the others, but soon develops a special bond with Jessica. When Jessica is again attacked by darklings, it seems clear that something about her threatens them. Perhaps they sense that her power will enable her to bring about their destruction.
Check the WRL catalog for The Secret Hour.
7:54 a.m., September 27th, 1974. Classes are about to start at the Ben Turpin School (grades K-8), and Mr. Elber is finishing up a disappointing extra-credit bio lab, in which he and two students failed to reanimate a deceased fetal pig. Not only did the experiment flop, but now there’s a weird purple smoke wafting up from all the chemicals. It smells really bad, and soon it has drifted outside the classroom and into the rest of the school. Before long, all the adults and most of the children are feeling unwell: symptoms include upset tummies, blanched complexions, drooling, and a ravenous urge to eat other people.
On the bright side, this zombie contagion only affects people who’ve hit puberty. The fourth-grade heroes of the story are hormonally immune to zombiefication. On the other hand, they’ve still got to defend themselves against being eaten alive—and the doors to the school are locked! Who will save them?
Fourth-grader Bob Fingerman, that’s who! Coincidentally sharing a name with the author, young Bob leads his classmates in a desperate plan to break free. Armed with épées, hockey sticks, and baseball bats from the gym, the children wage battle against their undead elders, with only their wits and their crude weapons to preserve them. (And a deus ex machina. The armored truck filled with weapons helps the situation considerably when it crashes through the wall.)
This is campy, silly, gory fun. The pictures are gross, not horrific, with over-the-top violence depicted in ookey splendor on the pages of the graphic novel, again and again and again to the point of absurdity (“Odd how something so terrifying can become redundant so soon,” quips one of the sidekicks). The one-liners are abundant and the humor is sophomoric. Because of the excessive violence, we’ve got this shelved in the adult section of the graphic novels, and my official party line is that this book is appropriate for mature readers, though privately I think it’s perfect for teens, or for any adult who never bothered to grow up.
Check the WRL catalog for Recess Pieces
You know how some movie reviews say, “This film grabs you by the throat and doesn’t let go”? Well, The Enemy does that in book form. I was hooked from the very beginning of this dark and somewhat disturbing story. It is set in London a year after everyone over sixteen falls victim to an unexplained illness. The adults who did not die are now zombie-like, killing and eating whatever they can to survive, and their kids are left to fend for themselves.
A band of kids are using the Waitrose grocery store as their home base, and they have turned it into a fortress. They send out parties to scavenge for food, which is becoming harder to find, and they must fight roving bands of zombies, whom they call “Grown-ups.” Don’t get too attached to any particular character, even if they seem to be one of the main protagonists, as the death toll is high. It gets even higher when Waitrose is visited by a kid they have never seen before, who claims to be from a similar entrenchment of kids at Buckingham Palace. The Waitrose kids, along with a group of kids similarly holed up in the nearby Morrisons grocery store, decide to abandon their stores and attempt to travel to the palace, where survival is promised to be much easier. And it’s not necessarily a suicide mission. As one character says, “The thing about grown-ups is, some of them are strong, some of them can run fast, and some of them are clever, but the strong ones are slow, the fast ones are stupid, and the smart ones are weak.”
I had to push past a particular incident very early on featuring the kids taking on a pack of feral dogs, but I can tell you dog-lovers that this is the only instance of canine violence in the story. There is plenty of human violence, however, and fans of Michael Grant’s Gone series and the Hunger Games series will find similarities here: kids in peril fight for survival in a world where adults can no longer help them.
Check the WRL catalog for The Enemy.
It sounds dreadful: a group of talking dogs goes around the neighborhood solving mysteries. It sounds like one of those wholesome cozy novels where the cat helps his human solve the crime, or like Scooby-Doo without the kitsch appeal. It’s amazing, really, that Evan Dorkin could take such a cutesy premise and turn it into something powerful and dark and wonderful.
Life is perfectly normal for the canines of Burden Hill, until a beagle named Jack begins to suspect that his doghouse is haunted. Concerned for their friend, Pugsley the Pug, Rex the Doberman Pinscher, and Whitey the Terrier seek help from the Wise Dog, an English Sheepdog accustomed to dealing with the paranormal. You’d expect this to devolve into a hokey little fluff piece, but listen: precisely five pages later I had tears in my eyes, and then it happened again two chapters after that. And then a bit after that I had to put the book down to have a good sniffle. And then again, and again.
The emotional depth is truly astonishing. Over the course of several discrete but sequential stories, you come to care for the seven main characters—six dogs and one cat—and the secondary characters they meet. Some of the stories are campy (cannibal frogs! zombie dogs! humongous killer rats!), but the comedic relief never undermines the pathos of the narrative.
Jill Thompson’s artwork beautifully illustrates Dorkin’s text. She draws her animals realistically without resorting to cartoony gags and paints them with lush watercolors. I’m thinking of one panel in particular that made my jaw drop, in which a Weimaraner tilts her head and looks at us with soulful eyes, the light and shadows dancing on her face. The image itself is haunting, as is her speech bubble: “My children are missing.”
The language is (mostly) mild, but the physical violence can get gory and the emotional violence is intense. However, more mature readers should check this out from the library, or even buy it from a comic book store; if the publisher, Dark Horse, sees enough profit from Beasts of Burden, then Dorkin and Thompson will be obligated to continue writing stories with my new favorite paranormal investigators.
Check the WRL catalog for Beasts of Burden
There are few writers who are as good at raising chills and creating an atmosphere of unease as Philip Pullman; his stories of the macabre should find readers of any age looking over their shoulders on dark autumn nights.
In Clockwork, Pullman starts off as many ghost stories do, with a narrator telling a gathered audience a scary tale to enliven a cold winter’s evening. In this case, the audience are the townsfolk of a small village in Germany, who are gathered in the White Horse Tavern to hear local writer Fritz spin his newest story. He has just introduced the character who looks to be a possible villain in the story when who should walk in but the man himself, Dr. Kalmenius, whose “eyes blazed like coals in caverns of darkness.” With Fritz leading the way, the townsfolk all quickly make their excuses and leave the tavern, all except the apprentice clock maker, Karl, who has been unable to complete the masterwork that will end his apprenticeship. As you probably guess, Kalmenius makes an offer to Karl that appears good on first glance, but when you deal with the powers of darkness, you put body and soul in peril, as Karl finds to his great discomfort.
You’ll need to get the book to find out the rest of the story, but suffice it to say that it involves a plucky serving maid, a lost prince, a relentless knight, and, hovering over all, the spectral figure of Dr. Kalmenius and his work. Clockwork would be a great book to read aloud on a cool night when the moon is full. Just be careful, because when you start a story you never know who might show up in it.
Check the WRL catalog for Clockwork
United We Spy was a fantastic conclusion to the Gallagher Girls series. The book’s plot has many twists and turns that keep the reader wanting more. This story has everything from romance to adventure. It starts with an explosion and ends with shocking destruction. The book answers the one question we’ve all been waiting for… “Who will live, and who will die?”
Check the WRL catalog for United We Spy
Violet Ambrose is the body finder. The bodies of dead animals and people call out to her. Sometimes she hears a sound, sometimes she sees an aura, sometimes she notices a smell, but she can always locate the dead. She can even locate their killers. Those who have killed something, or someone, in their lives bear a signature as well. Police officers, hunters, her mouse-hungry cat—marks on those are to be expected—but there are others who stand out to Violet for a much darker reason.
On one of the last nice days before Fall sets in, Violet’s relaxing day at the lake takes a turn when she comes across the body of a girl from the next town. Then girls from her own town and her own school begin to go missing. Violet knows there is a chance she could help find the killer. Even though her uncle is the chief of police, and she trusts him to do his job, only her best friend Jay can keep her from setting off on a personal investigation of the crime. Besides, there is the Homecoming dance to worry about, and the feelings she may or may not have for Jay, who may or may not feel something in return. High school is hard enough without a murderer on the loose.
Although our heroine does have a preternatural ability, this book reads more like a murder mystery than a supernatural fantasy. There are missing girls, a police investigation, and persons of interest. Author Kimberly Derting even gives us a few passages from the murderer’s point of view, which heightens the suspense.
Check the WRL catalog for The Body Finder.
Samantha Kingston, the teenaged narrator of Lauren Oliver’s debut novel, is that girl you hated in high school. She is smart and attractive and popular; she has a hot boyfriend; and she has not one, not two, but three best friends—which would be forgivable, if she weren’t such a snob. The lesser kids in the social hierarchy are beneath her notice, unless she goes out of her way to make fun of them. Sam is superficial and shallow and completely insufferable.
Oh well, nothing like dying to get your priorities straight.
On the way home from a party one Friday night, Sam is killed in a car accident. Instead of heading to the afterlife, Sam wakes up in her own bed on that same Friday morning. She’s been given a second chance to live through the same day. Understandably, she goes out of her way to not die. It works. She goes to bed safe and sound.
…and then wakes up all over again on Friday morning.
It is a plot device very similar to the one from the movie Groundhog Day, starring Bill Murray and also Andie MacDowell, whom I met once, which makes me famous. You take an unpleasant protagonist, make him or her live through the same day over and over and over, and hope that he or she eventually becomes a nicer person. But the movie starring my close friend Andie is a comedy; Before I Fall is a sober read. There are weighty themes here, including sexuality, sacrifice, bullying, eating disorders, friendship and loss, and suicide.
But there are some happy parts that emerge during Sam’s seven trips through the same day. There’s a bit of romance, a bit of laughter and frivolity, and quite a bit of redemption. It’s lovely to watch Sam transform into a sensitive person who cares about someone other than herself. The concept underpinning the story is totally cool, but even though it falls outside the realm of reality, it’s not what you’d normally call a fantasy novel. Instead call it an intense coming-of-age story.
Check the WRL catalog for Before I Fall
Xander King’s family is moving, and he’s not happy about it. Pinedale, the town they will now call home, is in the middle of nowhere, far away from his girlfriend and friends, and the school doesn’t even have a soccer team. He’s even less happy when he sees the house they are moving to. It gives Xander the creeps. And well it should. Interspersed through the story of the Kings’ arrival in town are scenes set in the house they will soon call home. A presence is there, and terrible things happened in the house many years ago. When the Kings explore their new home, they find footprints in the long-abandoned house. They also discover that sound travels strangely within its walls. Still, Xander’s dad intends to stay.
When Xander and his brother David find a linen closet in the house that transports them into a locker at the local school, Xander begins to see that the house is even stranger than he thought. Soon they find entryways to other, even more amazing places… and times. One night, Xander’s sister Toria sees the outline of a large, hulking man in her bedroom doorway, and they realize that not only can they go out through the gateways— other people can get in.
House of Dark Shadows is just the first in Robert Liparulo’s Dreamhouse Kings series, and it is followed up by Watcher in the Woods.
Check the WRL catalog for House of Dark Shadows.
In As You Wish, by Jackson Pearce, Viola is having a hard time getting over her last break-up. Her ex didn’t callously dump her and never speak to her again–that, she might have been able to handle. Instead, her boyfriend of two years and best friend of even longer told her that he’s gay. They are still best friends, but Viola feels like she doesn’t fit in at school anymore. She’s no longer Lawrence’s girlfriend, so who is she now? She wants to feel like she belongs again. So, sitting in Shakespeare class, pondering her problems, Viola makes a wish. She really means it, and really wants it; “I wish I didn’t feel invisible.” We have all had wishes run through our heads, but Viola gets lucky and an actual genie comes to her aid.
Viola calls him Jinn, since genies don’t have names, and he promises to grant her three wishes. He’ll even be nice about it and not try to trick her or grant her wishes in ways she didn’t intend. All he wants is for her to be quick about the wishing. Genies age on Earth, and the longer he spends with Viola the older he will become. Jinn is anxious to return to his home, called Caliban, but Viola wants to get her wishes right and is taking her time about it. This gives Jinn a chance to become more familiar with Earth, and for him to get to know Viola better. Ultimately, they get used to having each other around, and Jinn grows to like Earth better than Caliban. After all, Earth is where Viola is. Sparks are flying, but Jinn has a mission and he is shirking his wish-granting duties. He’ll have to answer for that, and for his growing feelings for Viola.
Check the WRL catalog for As You Wish
In an ideal world, somebody would have already written a comic book in which Sarah Palin, Michelle Obama, Hillary Clinton, and Caroline Kennedy decided to suit up in spandex and fight crime. This has not been done yet. I am waiting.
Meanwhile, Neal Bailey has delivered a collective graphic biography that explores the lives of these four American public figures. There are no invisible helicopters* like Wonder Woman drives, but there’s plenty of intrigue and drama and at least one scene with a gun. (Spoiler: it doesn’t turn out well for the moose.)
*Actually, there may have been invisible helicopters. I didn’t see any, but that’s the point of invisible helicopters.
Biographies often leave me bored, but Bailey homes in on the interesting parts and leaves out all the mind-numbing details that plague so many life stories. He touches lightly on the family, childhood, and backgrounds of the four women, deftly weaving in threads of modern American history, but the focus is on the women’s careers: Clinton’s tenure as First Lady, presidential candidate, and Senator; Obama’s legal work and First Lady activities; Kennedy’s intensely private work in law, politics, and charity; and Palin’s service as mayor, governor, and would-be Vice President. (Bailey wrote the section on Clinton prior to her appointment as Secretary of State, so those bits aren’t in here.)
This is suitable for tween and young adult readers, though I recommend it for adult readers who want to know more about some of the most powerful and influential women in the country. I would also encourage teachers to let their students use this text as a resource for school reports. It’s true that it’s a comic book graphic novel, but don’t let the pictures fool you: this is high-quality, well-researched biographical writing.
Check the WRL catalog for Female Force
What happens after you die? Where do you go? What is it like? The Everafter, by Amy Huntley, has its own theory. Our guide through the afterlife is Madison Stanton. As the book begins, Madison is sure she is dead, but she doesn’t know anything more than that. She is floating in a vast emptiness, unsure of who she is, where she came from, or anything else about herself. It is only when she notices other things floating in the abyss that things begin to come back to her. The other things are seemingly unrelated objects: “A spoon. A pair of socks, hair clips, pieces of paper, peas, a cell phone, keys, flowers, a handbag, a doll’s shoe.” But each is special to Madison in a particular way. They are all items she had lost throughout her life.
As Madison gets closer to each object, she is thrown back into the time and place she lost it. In this manner she is able to relive events from her life. She can act as an observer, or become a participant by reentering her body. Madison can even change the events of her life by choosing to find the object, although that prevents her from returning to the moment. And some moments, those with her mother, father, best friend Sandra, and boyfriend Gabe, are times she wants to be able to relive again and again. Madison must decide how to use these objects, and determine if they can help her learn how she died.
Check the WRL catalog for The Everafter
Madison’s parents are dragging her to the beach over summer vacation. That doesn’t sound all that bad, does it? Well, Sandyland isn’t much of a beach, and Madison would rather spend her time with her friends at home. She has a great sophomore year planned and can’t wait to work as a photographer for the school paper. Unfortunately, what was supposed to be a short vacation while her dad did a quick contracting job in Sandyland has turned into something very different. Her father’s job is taking longer than expected, her mother is looking for work, and her friends back home say there is an “Up for Auction” sign out on her lawn.
Making the best of things, Madison heads to the beach with her camera. When she drops it in the sand, and must get it repaired at the local “Psychic Photo,” two things happen. Madison begins to make friends with some local teens she meets at the shop, people she never would have looked at twice at home. Also, people begin to show up in her pictures who weren’t there when she took the picture. She and her friends are able to identify the woman in the first picture, but strangely, she has just died. Can her camera foretell death? And will Madison be stuck in Sandyland forever? This isn’t how Madison was supposed to spend her summer vacation.
Check the WRL catalog for Snap.
On the surface, Grace is a typical teenager living in Mercy Falls, Minnesota. Her parents are caring but quirky, leaving Grace alone much of the time. She is haunted by a childhood memory of being attacked by the wolves that inhabit woods surrounding her home and being saved by a wolf with golden eyes. Throughout her childhood, Grace remembers seeing “her” wolf during the winter. What is the connection between them?
Maggie Stiefvater creates her own werewolf mythology based on temperature and occasional traumatic events. When the town believes that a teen has been killed by the wolves that roam Mercy Falls, the wolves are hunted and Sam, injured by a gunshot, literally falls into Grace’s arms in his human form. As the relationship between Sam and Grace develops, Stiefvater tells a moving and realistic love story between two teenagers willing to work and fight to develop their relationship. The emotions and missteps of young love are realistically portrayed.
The task of keeping Sam in his human form is fraught with danger, but Grace and Sam persevere. The supporting cast in Shiver is as well developed as the two main characters. They are the teens that populate our world. The combination of character development and lyrical language keep the reader riveted to the story. Plus the development of the characters in their wolf personas is equally well-done. All of this allows the reader to engage in the suspension of disbelief that makes great books and movies work. Shiver works. It is a complete package of character development, setting, suspense, and romance. Shiver is followed up by Linger and Forever.
Check the WRL catalog for Shiver
What if fairy tales were real? Specifically, what if the story of Snow White was true? As Devoured begins, we find that there really was a Snow White, a wicked step mother, a magic mirror, a huntsman, and a prince. There was also a terrible legacy left to the descendants of both Snow White and the huntsman, in the form of a wish unknowingly granted to the wicked stepmother. With that groundwork laid, Marrone proceeds to a present day setting, and the story of a young girl named Megan.
Megan has had a tragic life. At age seven, she was in a car crash with her father and twin sister. Her father never regained consciousness, and her sister, Remy, died. Her mother has emotionally abandoned her, and spends all her time training for dance contests with the family dog. To make matters spooky, Megan is still visited by her sister, who shows her disturbing visions and gives her mysterious messages. Remy’s paranormal activity is amped up when Megan gets a job at the local theme park, Enchanted Land. All Megan wants to do at Enchanted Land is make some money, and keep an eye on her boyfriend and his “we’re just good friends” best friend Samantha. Unfortunately, Remy has other ideas. Remy warns Megan that someone will be killed, and shows her the image of a young girl with her heart cut out. Combine that familiar fictional murder method with the fact that the theme park owner has a talking mirror in her office and Marrone has herself a modern-day grim fairy tale.
Check the WRL catalog for Devoured.
This book of short stories certainly lives up to its name; it is geektastic! Name a cult favorite, fandom, field, or following and it will at least be mentioned in this book. There might even be a whole story devoted to the topic. Star Wars, Star Trek, Buffy, RPG, MMRPG, Rocky Horror, astronomy, paleontology, academic bowl, theatre, you name it, it’s in here. As for the authors, they are a “who’s who” of popular YA writers. You’ll find stories by Scott Westerfeld, Cassandra Clare, Garth Nix, Kelly Link, John Green, and Libba Bray, just to name a few.
Some of my personal favorites include Black and Castellucci’s contribution “Once You’re a Jedi, You’re a Jedi All the Way”, which explains what might happen if a Jedi and a Klingon at a SciFi convention woke up in each other’s arms; Tracy Lynn’s “One of Us”, which is about a cheerleader who needs a crash course in all things geek to impress her football player (and closet geek) boyfriend; and finally, “The Stars at the Finish Line” by Wendy Mass, in which two rival high school students bond while finding 110 space objects in a Messier Marathon.
Some of the stories are more accessible to non-geeks than others, and even though I am geekier than some (most?), there were a couple of stories that I could not connect with. For the most part, however, the stories in this book would be enjoyable for all. Between each story there are illustrations/comics, which are particularly funny if you know enough about geeks to get the jokes. Also, be sure to read each author’s bio. Before reading this I would never have guessed just how geeky these authors are! This book was clearly written by geeks for geeks, and I highly recommend it.
Check the WRL catalog for Geektastic.
Livingston creates an engaging, quick fantasy with a satisfying touch of romance in this novel.
Kelley Winslow is a 17-year-old actress working as an understudy in an off-off-off-off Broadway production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream. She gets her lucky break when the lead actress busts her ankle and Kelley has to step in and play the fairy queen Titania. Turns out the part fits Kelley more accurately than she expected.
Sonny Flannery is a mortal who was stolen by faeries many years ago. He now serves as a guard for the king of the Unseelie Court, Auberon. When he runs across Kelley practicing her part in Central Park, he is almost convinced she is part fae. After she saves a kelpie from drowning, he is certain she’s something from that Otherworld.
As Kelley and Sonny unravel the mysteries surrounding her past, they feel a growing attraction. But with dark treachery threatening the mortal world, they can’t spend much time pursuing a relationship.
This book, told from both Kelley’s and Sonny’s points of view, weaves legends of faeries cleverly into present day and develops the sweet beginning of a love story. Thankfully, Livingston continues Kelley’s adventures in Darklight.
Check the WRL catalog for Wondrous Strange.
Wintergirls is a “problem” book, a dark, intense exploration of what it’s like to live with anorexia, and between the vivid writing and the immediacy of the first-person, present-tense narration, I was compelled to turn page after page.
Lia is eighteen years old, a veteran of rehab for eating disorders; she’s been engaged for years in competitive weight loss with Cassie, her oldest and closest friend. When Cassie dies, horribly and alone, Lia’s stepmother is almost relieved that she’s no longer around to drag Lia down.
But Lia’s spiralling down anyway. Methodically weighing ten raisins (16 calories) and five almonds (35) against the need to, say, drive somewhere without passing out, Lia tinkers with the scale, plays her divorced parents against one another, and leaves a false trail of lies and plates with crumbs on them to hide her slow, deliberate unravelling. Whether Lia is literally being haunted by her ex-best friend, or whether her brain is merely tormenting her with convincing delusions, this is a horror story. It’s haunting enough to be trapped in Lia’s brain, with its funhouse mirror misperceptions of reality, viewing her own body as so much clutter, a load to be lightened.
Everything else aside, this is a strong piece of writing, playing with word association and typesetting and mythic metaphors from Persephone to Sleeping Beauty to Charlotte’s Web. Wintergirls isn’t a plot so much as a mind-set, an immersion by words into Lia’s strange, angry world. There’s no definitive answer to “why?” or “whose fault?” Lia’s point of view is a dark, dangerous place to put yourself as a reader. I came out of this book in somewhat of a daze, not sure what to do with this story, other than collar all of the young people in my life and remind them that they are beautiful and beloved.
Check the WRL catalog for Wintergirls.
When we first meet Nyuki the honeybee, she is still a sightless, shapeless larva, but soon she will transform into a mature worker. To begin the transmogrification, she must enter a cocoon, which she will build by producing silk from the spinnerets in her mouth and mixing it with her own feces.
It’s just amazing the things you learn in the course of this graphic novel, though I promise that most of them aren’t as gross as that silk-and-poo thing. You”ll learn about hive construction, bee swarming, pollination, reproduction, predation, defense, territorialism, and lots more.
And then more on top of that. And then a bit more. Author and illustrator Jay Hosler can’t help himself. He’s a honeybee neurobiologist.
He’s also a wonderful storyteller. You’ll get a thorough education in honeybees, but you won’t even notice it happening because you’ll be caught up in Nyuki’s life story. The science-y bits blend seamlessly with Nyuki’s adventures, from her romantic matchmaking efforts on the behalf of two flowers to her near-death encounter with a praying mantis.
I’m choosing to think of the book as whimsical nonfiction, though you could call it fiction with a whole lot of facts thrown in. I’m also choosing to think of it as an adult book, because I am an adult and I really liked it, but it’s quite suitable for teens and older elementary students. The crisp black-and-white drawings will appeal to all ages, and the drama will make you put the book down and sniffle in private. I, uh, heard. That didn’t happen to me or anything. Nope.
Check the WRL catalog for Clan Apis
Miranda was planning a quiet summer vacation at home in New York City. She needed time to get over her cheating ex-boyfriend, and was looking forward to an internship at the Museum of Natural History. Then she receives word that her grandmother has passed away, and that her mother has inherited the family home on Selkie Island in Georgia. Her mother needs Miranda’s logical mind and organizing skills to put everything in order to sell the house. Miranda’s mom had been estranged from her mother ever since she married Miranda’s father (from whom she is now divorced). There is a history there with which Miranda is completely unfamiliar, but she’s about to learn all the sordid details.
Selkie is an island with strange mythological ties. It is said to have been founded by the descendants of mermaids and mermen, a claim Miranda does not entertain, relying as she does on science and reason. Instead, she focuses her attention on acclimating to her new environment. Selkie is very different from NYC, and the people she meets, her mother’s old childhood friends, and their children, are not what she is used to. They are summer tourists to the island, and while they are welcoming, they have different expectations of Miranda than her friends in New York. One important rule Miranda learns is, don’t mingle with the locals. Selkie Island is a vacation destination for affluent Atlantans, and those who live on the island year round, who make their living fishing, are deemed unworthy of their attention. But Miranda finds more in common with one local fisherman’s son than these summer residents. His name is Leo and they meet on the beach, the spot where most of their interactions take place. Leo calls the beach “the great equalizer”, as it is the one place where townies and tourists can interact as equals.
What could, at this point, remain a traditional summer love story instead becomes a romance mixed with mystery and a touch of the supernatural. Miranda has suspicions about Leo’s background, and despite her logical mind, finds herself getting caught up in the mythic qualities of Selkie. She must also deal with the fallout from her mother’s tense past with her grandmother, and her late grandmother’s own involvement with a townie. Miranda soon finds that she has more in common with her grandmother than she ever could have imagined.
Check the WRL catalog for Sea Change