Sea Sirens A Trot & Cap'n Bill adventure

Amy Chu

Book - 2019

Trot, a Vietnamese American surfer girl, and Cap'n Bill, her cranky one-eyed cat, catch too big a wave and wipe out, sucked down into a magical underwater kingdom where an ancient deep-sea battle rages. The beautiful Sea Siren mermaids are under attack from the Serpent King and his slithery minions--and Trot and her feline become dangerously entangled in this war of tails and fins. This beautiful graphic novel was inspired by The Sea Fairies, L. Frank Baum's "underwater Wizard of Oz." It weaves Vietnamese mythology, fantastical ocean creatures, a deep-sea setting, quirky but sympathetic main characters, and fast-paced adventure into an imaginative, world-building story.--

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Subjects
Genres
Comics (Graphic works)
Action and adventure fiction
Fantasy fiction
Graphic novels
Published
New York : Viking, an imprint of Penguin Random House [2019]
Language
English
Main Author
Amy Chu (author)
Other Authors
Janet Lee, 1967- (illustrator), Jimmy Gownley (letterer)
Physical Description
140 pages : chiefly color illustrations ; 24 cm
ISBN
9780451480163
9780451480170
Contents unavailable.
Review by Booklist Review

Trot lives to surf, especially if her one-eyed cat, Cap'n Bill, comes along. But her Vietnamese grandfather is losing his memory and has become prone to wandering, so long days at the beach are hard to come by. When a giant wave knocks Trot and Bill off their board and deep into the ocean, they discover a queendom of sea sirens, who take them in while they recuperate. As magical as that is, the sirens are at war with the sea serpents, and Trot's grandfather has a startlingly large role to play. Lee (Return of the Dapper Men, 2010) brings her signature whimsy to the character designs here, which combine animated human and marine life forms, and accents them with fantastical touches, like flowing robes, floral garlands, and architectural hats and crowns. Luminescent watercolors and fine-lined detail add stunning depth to the dreamy underwater scenes, and the soft, warm tones of the colors make each face marvelously expressive. While the plot might be a touch ho-hum, the captivating artwork will certainly keep the pages turning.--Sarah Hunter Copyright 2019 Booklist

From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Review by Publisher's Weekly Review

Middle-schooler Trot lives in Huntington Beach, Calif., and loves nothing more than surfing with her cat, Cap'n Bill, while her grandfather fishes nearby. Trot's youth and Grandpa's dementia put the pair in the position of watching out for each other while Trot's mother is at work. When a massive wave knocks Trot and Bill deep underwater, they become accidental heroes of a skirmish between a group of Sea Sirens (merfolk) and large, talking Serpents. Given abilities to breathe and communicate underwater, Trot and Bill are invited to visit the Sea Siren kingdom where wonders await. While the story is based on The Sea Fairies by L. Frank Baum, it is impossible to avoid another, favorable comparison to a different fantasy world, that of Little Nemo in Slumberland, which seems a clear inspiration to both the fanciful story and art. Bright, densely detailed illustrations by Lee (Return of the Dapper Men) present the undersea world as a confectionary delight for the eyes, populated by strange characters of various species, marvelous costumes, and mysterious architecture, while Chu (Poison Ivy: Cycle of Life and Death) keeps the tone light, the stakes low, and the charm high. Sweet without being saccharine, this slight magical adventure feels timeless, optimistic, and fun. Ages 8-12. (June) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.


Review by School Library Journal Review

Gr 3-6-Trot, who is Vietnamese American, loves surfing with her cat, Cap'n Bill. But an afternoon out on the waves turns stressful when Trot brings her grandfather, who has dementia, with her to the beach and he wanders off. The authorities find him, but Trot's worried mother grounds Trot and her grandfather. When Trot and Cap'n Bill sneak out for a quick surf, they get knocked off their board and interrupt an underwater battle between the ancient Sea Sirens and their rivals, the menacing Serpents. Joined by Trot's grandfather, who followed them when they left home, Trot and Cap'n Bill have a fun evening with the regal Sea Sirens until the duo learn that Grandpa has wandered off again-this time, into the clutches of the Serpents. This is a light, low-stakes read that will resonate with those who enjoy spending time with lovable characters. Lee's stylized artwork and gorgeous colors will appeal to the tweenage set, while Chu's simple dialogue keeps things accessible to young comics fans. Though Trot and Cap'n Bill have a charming dynamic and energy, Trot's family and the Sirens and Serpents are lacking in depth. Younger readers are likely not to notice, however, thanks to the brisk pacing. VERDICT For libraries with younger comics fans, and a solid additional purchase for middle school collections.-Matisse Mozer, Los Angeles Public Library © Copyright 2019. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

(c) Copyright Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Review by Kirkus Book Review

A girl and her grouchy cat are thrust into the middle of an undersea war.Vietnamese-American Trot loves to surf with her one-eyed rescue cat, Cap'n Bill, as her immigrant grandfather fishes from the pier. Unfortunately, Grandpa has dementia. After he wanders off from his fishing spot and gets lost one day, Trot and Grandpa aren't allowed to go to the beach anymore. Naturally, Trot breaks the rules and goes surfing anyway. Wiping out on a huge wave, Trot and Cap'n Bill descend right into the middle of a fight between the Sea Sirens and the Serpents. With a little help from Siren magic, Trot and her catwhose querulous meows become understood as English ("JUST a cat?")and, later, Grandpa stay longer than they expect, getting ever more entwined in the underwater world and war. Inspired by L. Frank Baum's The Sea Fairies (1911), Chu and Lee create an impressive graphic fantasy with adventure, danger, and magic. Elaborate linework (reminiscent of John R. Neill's) and a vibrant pearlescent palette bring the underwater kingdom and all its fantastical creatures to life. Trot's relationship with her grandfather forthrightly addresses the seriousness of dementia and the effects it has on a family. From a plotting standpoint, the Siren and Serpent war wraps up rather quickly, but a "to be continued" panel promises further underwater escapades for Trot and her curmudgeonly cat.A fast-paced beginning to a stunning new under-the-sea graphic series. (Graphic fantasy. 8-12) Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Copyright (c) Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.