Review: Sea Change

16-year-old Miranda Merchant is great at science…and not so great with boys. After major drama with her boyfriend and (now ex) best friend, she’s happy to spend the summer on small, mysterious Selkie Island, helping her mother sort out her late grandmother’s estate.

There, Miranda finds new friends and an island with a mysterious, mystical history, presenting her with facts her logical, scientific mind can’t make sense of. She also meets Leo, who challenges everything she thought she knew about boys, friendship…and reality.

Is Leo hiding something? Or is he something that she never could have imagined?–From Amazon

I have had Sea Change on my neverending wish list for a while, so when I saw the Books and Bikinis Reading Challenge, I knew that it presented a perfect opportunity to finally read this book. Aimee Friedman’s novel is a wonderful summer romance, perfect for devouring poolside on a sweltering hot day.

Miranda, a girl obsessed with science and logic, moves to the mysterious Selkie Island for a summer after her grandmother dies in order to help her mother get the estate in order. When Miranda hears myths about kraken and merfolk, she ignores them. After all, Miranda is the kind of person who needs research and hard facts to believe in anything. Little does she know that both the island and her family have secrets that can’t be explained away by scientific research.

While on the island, Miranda struggles to fit in with the other heirs and heiresses. A native New Yorker, she is unfamiliar with their southern conventions, and uninterested in their petty summer romances. Miranda is especially displeased to discover her mother rekindling old friendships and old flames. Life on the island gets a whole lot better, though, when Miranda meets Leo, a fellow science geek with an unusual passion for the ocean. However, Leo is a local from the fisherman’s village, and Miranda’s family and other friends think little of his type. Despite the disapproval, Miranda and Leo develop a breathtaking romance. The only question is: Can it last?

Everything about this book was so enchanting. Friedman’s portrayal of the island, myths, and social conventions draws you in quickly, and the book ends well before you are ready. I finished still wanting more, which is, I suppose, better than wanting less. All the loose ends were tied up, so my need for more is really only a selfish desire to live in this world a little longer. I certainly wouldn’t turn down a sequel. I loved the complexity of the characters and relationships in this book, and was intrigued by the unique variation on the typical social class issues. If you need a good read to keep you occupied on a warm day, head on over to the island with Miranda, you never know what you might find there.

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