The Summer of Chasing Mermaids – Sarah Ockler | 4 Stars

Book | The Summer of Chasing Mermaids

Genre(s)| Young Adult / Contemporary / Romance

Date of Publication| June 2nd,  2015

My Rating | 4 Amazing Stars




Book(s) – The Summer of Chasing Mermaids

Feels– SO MANY FEELS – The good ones

Tears – None

 -I read this for free from Pulseit but this did not affect the review in any way-

Oh, this book. This gorgeous book – with that stunningly pretty cover and a wonderful, POC, protagonist and a sensible male character.

The Summer of Chasing Mermaids is the story of Elyse, and how she discovers herself, how she copes with adversity and deals with things in her life. And boy, does she deal with them.

Here’s the summary of the book to help you out (taken from Goodreads):

The youngest of six talented sisters, Elyse d’Abreau was destined for stardom—until a boating accident took everything from her. Now, the most beautiful singer in Tobago can’t sing. She can’t even speak.

Seeking quiet solitude, Elyse accepts a friend’s invitation to Atargatis Cove. Named for the mythical first mermaid, the Oregon seaside town is everything Elyse’s home in the Caribbean isn’t: An ocean too cold for swimming, parties too tame for singing, and people too polite to pry—except for one.

Christian Kane is a notorious playboy—insolent, arrogant, and completely charming. He’s also the only person in Atargatis Cove who doesn’t treat Elyse like a glass statue. He challenges her to express herself, and he admires the way she treats his younger brother Sebastian, who believes Elyse is the legendary mermaid come to life.

When Christian needs a first mate for the Cove’s high-stakes Pirate Regatta, Elyse reluctantly stows her fear of the sea and climbs aboard. The ocean isn’t the only thing making waves, though—swept up in Christian’s seductive tide and entranced by the Cove’s charms, Elyse begins to wonder if a life of solitude isn’t what she needs. But changing course again means facing her past. It means finding her inner voice. And scariest of all, it means opening her heart to a boy who’s best known for breaking them . . .

I absolutely loved the plot and the storyline of the book –from flashes of Elyse’s past to the present, where she slowly falls for Christian. There is immense character development happening in the book, in a very paced way and that makes it very enjoyable to read.

Another aspect of the book I’d like to point out is the vast array of supporting characters it had who really brought out the novel – from Kirby – Elyse’s friend and Lemon, Kirby’s eccentric and amazingly insightful mother, Vanessa, the feminist who is one of my favourite female characters, especially because she starts out as the girl who Christian hooks up with and generally, these girls don’t go down well with the readers, and finally, Sebastian Kane- Christian’s younger brother. Well-developed sibling relationships are important to me and this book made me so happy with the way it portrayed Christian and Seb’s relationship. SO VERY CUTE. And Sebastian Kane is a gem of a character who needs to be appreciated as the cute little boy that he is.



Let’s talk about Elyse for a second, because holy cow, she is a brilliant protagonist. The Summer of Chasing Mermaids has a bit of poetry and verse and all things beautiful because of her. She is such a strong, calm female and the fact that she is a POC makes me so happy. The way her heritage and culture are explored and explained in the book, it has been done very well. I enjoyed learning about T&T and reading about the chocolate, though it did make me hungry at times. Hehe.

As for Christian *swoons*, he is a book boyfriend I’d keep forever. With that handsome face, he also has a wonderful personality and a beautiful heart. He certainly makes the effort to include Elyse but also gives her space to figure it out on her own. The romance between the two of them is slow and just perfect.

The book is beautifully written, with such a poignant feel to it that I was transported into the setting it provided. The book is also very diverse and feministic in its approach and I simply adored that. The way Ockler has created this group of characters who have their flaw, but are so very real – is just fantastic.


Take a bow, Sarah Ockler, you’ve earned it.

If you’re looking for your next read, sprinkled with diversity and all the avant garde –ness possible with excellent writing and good plot line, look no further, you’ve found it.

Elyse’s story still resonates within me and I loved the book so, so much.

I end my review with my favourite quote from the book:

“Changed me into someone who could save myself.”

Until the next one,

Nia Carnelio.



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