The Happiness Project

Mental Health blog, focused on self-care and learning to love your life!

*** Possible Spoilers Ahead! ***
Book Title: Sea Witch Rising
Author: Sarah Henning
Main Theme: Young Adult, Fantasy, Paranormal

Thesis: Runa is desperate to save her sister, who’s ill-fated attempt to making the King fall in love with her would most likely turn sour. Evie craves her freedom from the duties of the Sea Witch, but most play her cards just right to escape from her watery prison. Both girls will have to make sacrifices, but are they willing to make them for their own desires?

What Drew Me In: I read Henning’s first book in the series “Sea Witch” a couple of years ago. It was definitely one of those moments where you just happen to find a pretty looking book on the shelf of your library. (Henning’s books are gorgeous by the way. Definitely judge that cover art!). I decided to try it out and immediately fell in love with it. I was so excited to read the second book, which I knew was coming out in 2019, but I guess with all of my excitement for the other books I was reading I kind of forgot about this book until recently, when I saw this book on the shelf, just waiting for me to take it home. I decided to bring it along with me when my husband and I went camping, and I’m so glad I did!

My Thoughts: Let me say this first, I absolutely love that we can see this classic tale twisted more on the “villains” side, even though I don’t really consider Evie a villain. Sometimes we don’t want for the good guy to win, or for the bad guy to suddenly become good. I like seeing a bad guy just trying to live their lives to the best ability that they can.

The plot of the book is just so beautiful, mixed with Danish customs settled in the World War 1 time period. For some, they didn’t like the modernness of the story, but I found it to be a delightful addition to the story. When the old and the new mix just right, it makes for a fantastic story. We also get more of a story about witches, which were around in book one, but it was more about the mermaids and humans. Thankfully, the witchcraft world is definitely opened up more in this book, as we meet more people with different abilities and backgrounds. Opening up the world is always a good idea for a book, especially in the YA world.

We already know that I love Evie, so I won’t waste to much time talking about her. Runa is also a great character, who is the twin sister of Alia. While Alia is a love-struck, flighty kind of gal, Runa is more down-to-Earth and not so quick to believe in true love fairy tales. She’s admirable for her determination to help her sister get out of the bargain with the Sea Witch because if she fails to capture the King’s attention, she will die and turn into sea foam. Even though she comes off pretty pessimistic, she’s willing to sacrifice herself because she can not bear the thought of losing her sister.

There are definitely some twists and turns through-out the book, which kept me entertained. Ask my husband, as soon as we got our tent up and everything put away, I dove in my book and pretty much stayed there for the rest of the night. He eventually dragged me away to go on a walk around the lake and look at some of the local wildlife around our campground. Thanks for putting up with your bookworm wife!

I think some people were put off from this book because it does focus more on the twin sisters rather than Evie, and I know most people fell in love with her character from the first book. But you also have to stop and consider something; Evie is trapped in an underwater cave by the Sea King, and can not leave it without some heavy-duty magic. There really isn’t much to go off there, and so what dialog we get from her should be treasured. If you can open your mind up to expand from just Evie’s story, I think you would be pleasantly surprised by this book.

Would I Recommend This Book?: If the answer isn’t clear from above, then let me say it clearer: YES! Mermaid stories are coming back in full swing, and I’m all for it. This would be a great book for teens and adults who like to indulge in their YA fantasies, so don’t be shy, go grab yourself a copy from Amazon or your library!

Thanks for reading my latest review! I have been loving YA lately, and I don’t plan on stopping any time soon. I can’t wait for another book review, as I have a lot of time to read lately since we are stuck in the house. I’m working on some other great posts as well, as this blog is slowly turning more and more into what I have envisioned for it. I hope everyone has a happy rest of your week!

The Library Lady ♡

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