Shadow in the Sea by Sheila A. Nielson
Publication date: July 15th 2015
Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult
When sixteen-year-old Sadelyn Hanson washes up on the shores of Windwaithe Island, her beauty and the strange marks on her wrist make superstitious locals suspect she is a mermaid. Feigning amnesia, Sade hides a far worse secret: she was sailing to her own murder trial when she was thrown overboard by the real killer, the cunning and cruel Captain Westwood.
Sade’s quiet effort to rebuild her life on the island is threatened when she meets an actual young merman. Unable to speak his language, Sade still longs for the warm companionship he offers, despite the locals’ dire legends about merfolk and their dark magic. But her confused feelings for the impossible boy become the least of her problems when Captain Westwood’s ship docks at Windwaithe. With nowhere to escape, Sade must trust in the one person who doesn’t fear the merfolk. A woman who had dealings with them herself—years ago.
Shadow in the Sea follows the story of Sade, a girl accused of killing her guardian, survives a storm at sea and washes on the shore of Windwaithe Island. The island itself is familiarized with mermaid folklore and are quite suspicious of Sade when she washes on the shores. Mrs. Rousay and her daughter Estelle help Sade on her path of healing and self discovery. Over time Sade meets the startling Araedyn, whom doesn’t speak their language, but is able to convey their thoughts through emotions and feelings. Soon it doesn’t take long for the Captain Westwood, the captain from the ship that Sade was originally sailing on, to arrive in the island.
Shadow in the Sea is romantic and heart warming. And has an awesome spin on it. Sade is the Prince Eric in this story and instead of their being a mermaid, there’s a merman. This book is a very emotional tale, but Sade’s story, her discovery in finding herself and finding her courage is very touching. The only thing I didn’t really enjoy in this story is the love at first sight part. I think that for the amount of time Araedyn and Sade spent together, the love happened really fast. But the book is filled with so much other awesomeness, that it definitely makes up for the insta-love story. I really enjoyed Sade’s relationships with the other characters in the story. I think the characters were very well developed, the plot-line, though slow to start, really picks up about half way through the book and is definitely worth it to read it all the way to the end. For a villain, Captain Westwood is cleverly written! The world building was definitely a strength in this book. The way the author describes the people and the world is remarkable.
If you like a little mystery, a tale about rebuilding and healing, and a love at first sight, then I highly recommend this heart warming mermaid tale.
About the Author:
Sheila never did figure out what she wanted to be when she grew up. She graduated from college with a BFA in illustration, has worked as a children’s librarian for over eighteen years, and would eventually like to be a full-time author. Why pick one career when you can have many? Sheila lives with her two pets, a goffin cockatoo and a tiny toy poodle. She was born and raised in California but has come to also love her adopted home in Utah where she currently resides.