Fear the Drowning Deep
by Sarah Glenn Marsh
Release Date: October 4th, 2016
Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy, Paranormal, Historical Fiction
SYNOPSIS: Witch’s apprentice Bridey Corkill has hated the ocean ever since she watched her granddad dive in and drown with a smile on his face. So when a dead girl rolls in with the tide in the summer of 1913, sixteen-year-old Bridey suspects that whatever compelled her granddad to leap into the sea has made its return to the Isle of Man.
Soon, villagers are vanishing in the night, but no one shares Bridey’s suspicions about the sea. No one but the island’s witch, who isn’t as frightening as she first appears, and the handsome dark-haired lad Bridey rescues from a grim and watery fate. The cause of the deep gashes in Fynn’s stomach and his lost memories are, like the recent disappearances, a mystery well-guarded by the sea. In exchange for saving his life, Fynn teaches Bridey to master her fear of the water — stealing her heart in the process.
Now, Bridey must work with the Isle’s eccentric witch and the boy she isn’t sure she can trust — because if she can’t uncover the truth about the ancient evil in the water, everyone she loves will walk into the sea, never to return.
REVIEW: First off, that cover is absolutely GORGEOUS. I thought this book had a really promising premise, but then I just had such a hard time getting into it and I couldn’t really figure out why. There were so many names and it was difficult for me to keep people straight, especially the main character’s sisters.
I liked the setting of this small island surrounded by the ocean–which was really a character by itself–and I thought all of the place descriptions were really beautiful. Even when Bridey was looking out at the waves frightened, they were frightening in this beautiful, beautiful way.
That being said, I did have some issues with the plot and the pacing of the story. Like I mentioned at the beginning of my review, I had a really hard time getting into it. The story just started so SLOW in my opinion. It took me over a week just to get halfway through it. I mean, stuff was happening and sure it was exciting stuff, but I just didn’t find myself turning the pages faster and faster to find out what would happen next. I felt like maybe we were in Bridey’s head too much. While I think this was true to her character, I just felt tired by all of the uncertainty and by her dwelling so much on her grandfather and Lugh and Fynn.
The plot itself had a lot going on with sea monsters and magic as well as Bridey’s relationships with some of the islanders. It seemed almost like the drama amongst the characters was fighting with the drama created by the actual plot. Morag was an interesting character, but perhaps a little cliche. There’s a rumored witch that nobody on the island likes…original. Then there’s the mini-love triangle/insta-love situation that occurs (blech).
Overall, I don’t think this book is bad, by any means. I definitely think it has it’s audience, but I don’t think I’m necessarily a part of it. I have a hard time when I feel like books are paced too slow. There were definitely parts I really liked and parts that I didn’t. In the end, I would give this one a 3/5.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Sarah Glenn Marsh writes young adult novels and children’s picture books. An avid fantasy reader from the day her dad handed her a copy of The Hobbit and promised it would change her life, she’s been making up words and worlds ever since.
When she’s not writing, Sarah enjoys watercolor painting, ghost hunting, and pursuits of the nerd variety, from video games to tabletop adventures. She’s never met an animal or a doughnut she didn’t like.
Sarah lives in Richmond, Virginia with her husband and their tiny zoo of four rescued greyhounds, a bird, and many fish. She is the author of Fear the Drowning Deep, the Reign of the Fallenduology, and several picture books.
Note: I received this book free from the author/blog tour in exchange for an honest review.