DEEP BLUE (Image Credit: Jennifer Donnelly)

Book Review: ‘Deep Blue’ by Jennifer Donnelly

DEEP BLUE (Image Credit: Jennifer Donnelly)

DEEP BLUE (Image Credit: Jennifer Donnelly)

 

Jennifer Donnelly has been one of my favorite authors for a very long time. I was beyond excited when I was presented with the opportunity to review her upcoming YA novel, Deep Blue. Not only is it a magical and action-packed story brimming with Donnelly’s characteristic wit and voice, it is also about mermaids. Really, you can’t lose.

Deep Blue is the story of Serafina, the principessa of Miromara. On the day of her Dokimi (the ceremony where she proves her lineage, demonstrates her ability to rule and exchanges betrothal vows with her future husband), she dreams of a prophecy is made predicting a nightmarish future unless Sera can find five others who can help save the merfolk.

I personally haven’t encountered many mermaid books, so this was a really interesting concept to me. Donnelly does a great job of incorporating the history of the mer people and introducing their culture, politics and lifestyle. While it did take a bit for me to adjust to the necessary changes between mermaid and human stories (i.e., everyone is swimming everywhere, everyone’s bottom half is some type of sea-creature, etc.), once I got used to it, the story was engrossing.

One of my favorite things is the way the merfolk speak. Their use of language incorporates so many ocean-related puns that I was basically beside myself with joy. Money is called “currensea.” Young mer-ladies are called “merls” instead of “girls.” When someone is being a smart aleck, their friends call them a “wise wrasse.” The way the characters speak is incredibly colorful and entertaining, and it adds a lot to the story.

Themes of magic are constantly present in the book. The mer all have at least a little magical ability. Some have intense power that can bend water and create illusions. They cast spells through singing and music, and they can share “bloodsongs” – memories that they physically draw from their bodies.

Not only is Deep Blue full of magic and adventure, it also confronts problems that real-life teenagers face daily. At the beginning of the novel, Sera is harassed by one of her courtiers and has to learn how to deal with others’ opinions of her. She also deals with boy issues, friendship issues and hard family relationships.

Even if you’re not a fan of fantasy, Deep Blue is definitely worth the read. Donnelly’s signature style of writing and fast-paced plot development will appeal to readers of all ages and interests.


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Abbie Reetz
Hi! I’m Abbie. I’m a Wisconsin girl who just completed a degree in journalism, which I hope will help me achieve my goal of reading books and writing about them for a living. In my free time, I enjoy reading, watching Doctor Who and hanging out with my boyfriend and his two cats.
Check out more from Abbie Reetz on TDQ…


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Author Melissa de la Cruz (Image Credit: Denise Bovee)

An Exclusive Interview with Author Melissa de la Cruz

Author Melissa de la Cruz (Image Credit: Denise Bovee)

Author Melissa de la Cruz (Image Credit: Denise Bovee)

Author Melissa de la Cruz is no stranger to success, with smash hits like her Blue Bloods series and Witches of East End, now a hit series on Lifetime. And her newest novel, The Ring and The Crown, will surely add another accomplishment to the list.

To celebrate the release of her latest novel on April 1, de la Cruz was kind enough to talk with us about her inspiration for the magical world of The Ring and The Crown, what time period piece of clothing she’d love to bring back to 2014 and what reader’s can expect from the next book in The Ring and The Crown series.

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THE RING & THE CROWN (Image Credit: Melissa de la Cruz)

Book Review: ‘The Ring and The Crown’ by Melissa de la Cruz

THE RING & THE CROWN (Image Credit: Melissa de la Cruz)

THE RING & THE CROWN (Image Credit: Melissa de la Cruz)

Using a re-imagined European and American history as the social construct of an entire society, Melissa de la Cruz brings to the page a blend of aristocratic life and Arthurian legend in her newest novel The Ring and The Crown, set to hit shelves April 1.

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Giveaway: Win Melissa de la Cruz’s ‘The Ring and The Crown’ and more!

THE RING & THE CROWN (Image Credit: Melissa de la Cruz)

THE RING & THE CROWN (Image Credit: Melissa de la Cruz)

Melissa de la Cruz has rewritten history itself with her new novel The Ring and The Crown, a novel filled with magic, aristocracy and romance. Told through the voices of five different characters, readers are taken through the journey of an arranged marriage that has drastic effects reaching far beyond the young couple. With mention of Avalon, the great Merlin and a new, magically-inclined European history, The Ring and The Crown is perfect for anyone who’s a fan of fantasy stories and Gossip Girl.

Sound interesting? Well now’s your chance to read de la Cruz’s novel for free! The Daily Quirk is excited to announce that we’re giving away a copy of The Ring and the Crown as well as a special glam makeup collection to celebrate the novel’s release on April 1.

So hurry and enter the contest below, because this is an opportunity you won’t want to miss!

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Book Review: ‘Defy’ by Sara B. Larson

DEFY (Image Credit Sara B. Larson)

DEFY (Image Credit Sara B. Larson)

It’s pretty early in the year, but I can confidently say that I’ll have a hard time finding a new release in the upcoming months that I enjoy as much as I enjoyed Defy by Sara B. Larson. Defy is Larson’s debut novel, and it’s an incredible story full of wit, magic and romance.

When evil sorcerers destroy her village and kill her parents, Alexa Hollen must pretend to be a boy to avoid a life in the breeding houses – brothels where underprivileged girls are forced to get pregnant for the sole purpose of expanding the king’s army. Years later, she is the best fighter in Prince Damian’s personal guard. She has guarded the secret of her true identity, but after she, the prince and one of her fellow guards are kidnapped, she learns some people know the truth about her. After years of suppressing any type of romantic feelings for fear of being discovered, Alex suddenly finds herself in the middle of an unexpected love triangle. She must learn how to navigate the world of romance while doing everything in her power to save her country from evil. Continue reading

Author Sarah Gastright (Image Credit: Borealis Photography)

An Exclusive Interview with ‘Miss Alice’ Author Sarah Gastright

 Author Sarah Gastright (Image Credit: Borealis Photography)

Author Sarah Gastright (Image Credit: Borealis Photography)

Sarah Gastright’s debut fantasy novel, Miss Alice, hit shelves Jan. 25. At only 15 years old, Gastright wrote the novel in the spare hours she could find between school, spending time with her family and seeing her friends. We were lucky enough to have the opportunity to sit down with her and find out more about her writing process, the world of Miss Alice and her upcoming projects. Read on for the full interview! Continue reading

The Pentrals (Image Credit: Crystal Mack)

Book Review: ‘The Pentrals’ by Crystal Mack

The Pentrals (Image Credit: Crystal Mack)

The Pentrals (Image Credit: Crystal Mack)

Antares follows people for a living. Her job is to track one person’s movements. She has to monitor them as closely as possible, and there are drastic consequences if she strays from her job.

No, Antares is not a spy or secret operative of some government organization. Instead, the main character of The Pentrals by Crystal Mack is something much more common – a shadow. Continue reading

Book Review: ‘A Thousand Perfect Things’ by Kay Kenyon

A Thousand Perfect Things (Image Credit: Kay Kenyon)

A Thousand Perfect Things (Image Credit: Kay Kenyon)

I have always been a huge fan of both historical fiction and fantasy, so when I picked up A Thousand Perfect Things by Kay Kenyon and realized it combines my two favorite genres, I couldn’t wait to keep reading.

Astoria Harding is not considered a normal young lady by the standards of society in 1857 Londinium, Anglica. Instead of wishing for a husband, she spends her time learning about the natural sciences from her Grandpapa and longing to make a scientific discovery that would get her inducted to the Royal Society. When her family has to move to Bharata (a land full of magic and mysticism), Tori undertakes her Grandpapa’s legacy to find a magical giant, golden lotus that is rumored to exist there. Little does she know, Bharati forces as well as the Anglican government also want to find the lotus, and both sides will do whatever it takes to ensure they find it first. Continue reading

Book Review: ‘Parallel’ by Lauren Miller

Parallel by Lauren Miller (Image Credit: Lauren Miller)

Parallel by Lauren Miller (Image Credit: Lauren Miller)

Parallel by Lauren Miller honestly left me speechless. That’s a pretty difficult thing to do, but as soon as I finished reading the final words, I couldn’t do anything but sit in silence and try to wrap my mind around how a book can be that complex and adorable and amazing all at the same time.

If you couldn’t tell, I am kind of in love with this book. And it’s not just because it’s about a girl named Abby who lives in the Midwestern United States and spends her whole life wanting to be a journalist (because, um, that’s totally my life). Parallel was stunningly complicated. It kind of has to be – it deals with parallel universes. Continue reading

What We’ve Been Reading: February 2013

What We’ve Been Reading: February 2013

When The Daily Quirk Bloggers aren’t writing, they’re reading! We decided it would be fun to share our bibliophilia with you by listing what we have been reading each month and give you our opinions on a three point scale: Recommend It, Maybe, or Skip It. Have fun checking out what pages we’ve been turning, and feel free to share your recent reads in the comments! Continue reading

Book Review: ‘Pandemonium’ (Delirium #2) by Lauren Oliver

(Image Credit: Lauren Oliver)

(Image Credit: Lauren Oliver)

In case you don’t already know, Pandemonium is the second book in Lauren Oliver’s Delirium trilogy. If you haven’t read Delirium, you probably don’t want to read this review or it will be totally spoiled for you. (You can read my review of Delirium HERE.) Continue reading

Book Review: ‘Warm Bodies’ by Isaac Marion

Image Credit: Isaac Marion

Image Credit: Isaac Marion

Here’s an idea: what if zombies actually had intelligent thoughts and a conscience? What would they be thinking and feeling, and would it make us think differently about them? This is the idea behind Warm Bodies, where our narrator is, in fact, a zombie. Continue reading

Book Review: ‘Shatter Me’ by Tahereh Mafi

Image Credit: Tahareh Mafi

Image Credit: Tahareh Mafi

I’m not even really sure how to begin to summarize Shatter Me, because there is just so much. We meet our protagonist, Juliette, in an insane asylum. Juliette has unique powers, similar to Rogue from X-Men: when she touches people she sucks the life out of them. As a result, she’s locked up in the asylum. In this setting, we learn about Juliette’s past, as well as the fairly recent shift in society that has led to the country being run by something called “The Reestablishment.” It’s your usual dystopian stuff – something bad happens, powerful people take advantage of it, even worse things happen as a result. Since the Reestablishment is still fairly new, neither the reader nor Juliette totally knows what’s happening outside of the asylum walls. During this section we are also introduced to Adam, a boy from Juliette’s past who is now a soldier for the Reestablishment. Continue reading

Book Review: ‘Every Day’ by David Levithan

Try to imagine living life every day, but never living your own life. This is the difficult truth for A, the main “character” (for lack of a better word) in David Levithan’s Every Day. Each morning, A wakes up in a new body. Just like A, we don’t really know many specifics. A doesn’t remember ever having a body of his/her own. A doesn’t associate with a particular gender because it has always changed based on the day. (I’m going to go assume A is male during this review for simplicity’s sake; there’s some commentary on this in the book that I’ll address later.) But A can feel that his mind is separate from the bodies he inhabits. With some effort, A is able to access each body’s memory and uses this information to live each day as closely to his host’s normal routine as possible.  A doesn’t know what the host remembers the following day. After 16 years, A has learned not to make attachments to people. Continue reading