Sea witch

Sarah Henning

Book - 2018

Ever since her best friend, Anna, drowned, Evie has been an outcast in her small fishing town. Hiding her talents, mourning her loss, drowning in her guilt. Then a girl with an uncanny resemblance to Anna appears offshore and, though the girl denies it, Evie is convinced that her best friend actually survived. That her own magic wasn't so powerless after all ... The rise of Hans Christian Andersen's iconic villainess is a heart-wrenching story of friendship, betrayal, and a girl pushed... beyond her limits-- to become a monster.--From dust jacket.

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Subjects
Genres
Paranormal fiction
Romance fiction
Novels
Published
New York : Katherine Tegen Books 2018.
Language
English
Physical Description
348 pages ; 23 cm
ISBN
0062438778
9780062438775
Main Author
Sarah Henning (author)
Review by Booklist Reviews

Evie, Anna, and Nik were inseparable, no matter that Nik was a prince, Anna a noble, and Evie a poor villager. But then Anna drowned, and even Evie, who possessed magic she hid even from her dearest friends, couldn't save her. Evie and Nik are still close, even though the other villagers ostracize Evie for acting above her station. When Nik almost drowns, Evie catches a glimpse of his supernatural rescuer. At first, she doesn't believe her eyes—she may be a witch, but surely there's no such thing as mermaids—but then a mysterious girl who bears a striking resemblance to Anna appears in the village, desperate to see Nik. As Evie agrees to help her, she starts to wonder if her friend really did drown all those years ago, or if she became something else. Though the characters and dialogue are sometimes more old-fashioned and other times more modern, this spin on The Little Mermaid is full of plot twists and heart-in-throat action. Fans of twisted fairy tales will find plenty to love. Grades 7-10. Copyright 2018 Booklist Reviews.

Review by Publishers Weekly Reviews

Deftly transforming a fairy tale into a richly layered exploration of culture and relationships, Henning tells the origin story of the Sea Witch from Hans Christian Andersen's "The Little Mermaid." Sixteen-year-old Evie is a child of Havnestad, a Danish fishing town, and of the sea, but she also possesses a dark secret that could see her killed by her own people. After the death of their mutual best friend, Anna, Evie and the crown prince, Nik, forge a friendship, which is tested daily by public judgment as well as their private pain from the loss of Anna. Evie finds welcome escape from her grief with Iker, Nik's cousin, a crown prince in his own right and the young man who has captured her heart. Then Annemette, a mysterious young woman, arrives in the kingdom and quickly fills the role that Anna previously held in Evie and Nik's lives. Exquisitely detailed examinations of Danish seaside traditions lend gravitas to a debut novel rooted in the sea and its mercurial moods. A focus on Evie's internal monologue and romantic attachments unfortunately overshadows the subtly nuanced explorations of magic and its uses, but readers who persevere will be rewarded with richly woven threads of fairy tale allusions and a surprising ending. Ages 13–up. Agent: Rachel Ekstrom, Folio Literary Management. (July) Copyright 2018 Publishers Weekly.

Review by School Library Journal Reviews

Gr 7 Up—This prequel to "The Little Mermaid" opens with a prologue in which two girls and a boy are playing and tragedy strikes. Years later, the story continues with Evie, who is secretly a witch, and her best friend Crown Prince Nik, who is celebrating his 16th birthday with an extravagant party aboard a ship. A storm brews, and Nik is thrown overboard and almost dies; but he is saved by someone with a beautiful singing voice. Flashbacks show readers that the duo was once a trio. Anna, the third friend, had tragically drowned four years earlier, and her body was never recovered. Evie meets a mysterious girl who showed up on shore, who looks and sounds like Anna but calls herself Annemette. This young woman is a mermaid, was responsible for saving Nik from drowning, and insists that she is not Anna. She is able to take on human form for four days and can live as a human forever if she secures true love's kiss in this time. Evie vows to help and keep her secret, and Annemette will keep Evie's magic powers a secret, as well. It will become apparent to readers where the characters' hearts' desires are pointing them, especially as big twists play out. Some Norse terminology and mythology are interwoven and help create a vivid setting. The ending feels a bit rushed and the closing action happens quickly, but romance and fantasy fans won't mind. VERDICT This enjoyable read will entertain and be a great fit for collections where fairy-tale retellings are popular.—Megan Huenemann, Norris High School, Firth, NE Copyright 2018 School Library Journal.

Review by Publisher Summary 1

Rendered an outcast in town after her friend Anna's death, Evie befriends a newcomer with an uncanny likeness to Anna and when the girls pursue romances with two charming princes, Evie has a chance at happiness until her new friend reveals a secret.

Review by Publisher Summary 2

Ever since her best friend, Anna, drowned, Evie has been an outcast in her small fishing town. Hiding her talents, mourning her loss, drowning in her guilt. Then a girl with an uncanny resemblance to Anna appears offshore and, though the girl denies it, Evie is convinced that her best friend actually survived. That her own magic wasn't so powerless after all ... The rise of Hans Christian Andersen's iconic villainess is a heart-wrenching story of friendship, betrayal, and a girl pushed beyond her limits-- to become a monster.--From dust jacket.

Review by Publisher Summary 3

Rendered an outcast after the death of her best friend, a guilt-stricken girl from a small fishing town befriends an offshore newcomer and together they pursue romances with two charming princes before her friend's aquatic identity comes to light.

Review by Publisher Summary 4

Wicked meets "The Little Mermaid" in the captivating origin story of the sea's most iconic villainess, perfect for fans of Heartless and Dorothy Must Die.Ever since her best friend Anna died, Evie has been an outcast in her small fishing town. Hiding her talents, mourning her loss, drowning in her guilt.Then a girl with an uncanny resemblance to Anna appears on the shore, and the two girls catch the eyes of two charming princes. Suddenly Evie feels like she might finally have a chance at her own happily ever after. But magic isn’t kind, and her new friend harbors secrets of her own. She can’t stay in Havnestad—or on two legs—without Evie’s help. And when Evie reaches deep into the power of her magic to save her friend’s humanity—and her prince’s heart—she discovers, too late, what she’s bargained away.

Review by Publisher Summary 5

Wicked meets "The Little Mermaid" in the captivating origin story of the sea's most iconic villainess, perfect for fans of Heartless and Dorothy Must Die.Ever since her best friend Anna died, Evie has been an outcast in her small fishing town. Hiding her talents, mourning her loss, drowning in her guilt.Then a girl with an uncanny resemblance to Anna appears on the shore, and the two girls catch the eyes of two charming princes. Suddenly Evie feels like she might finally have a chance at her own happily ever after. But magic isn't kind, and her new friend harbors secrets of her own. She can't stay in Havnestad'or on two legs'without Evie's help. And when Evie reaches deep into the power of her magic to save her friend's humanity'and her prince's heart'she discovers, too late, what she's bargained away.