Short Summary via Goodreads: Before she was the sea witch, Ersyla was a simple girl with an unfortunate secret.
It wasn’t her fault magick was a part of her, or that the King’s heartache turned the world against her. Struggling to understand how she could be put to death just for living, Ersyla must learn who to trust before her dark secret turns her heart even darker.
My Review: This gripping, emotional short is a new spin on a classic favorite. It gives a glimpse into Ersyla’s past, the beginning of her magic, and the unfortunate events leading up to her turn from witchling to the dark sea-witch we know her to be.
Sullivan stuck true to the underlying darkness in the heart of Ersyla’s character, which is what drew and hooked me in. There are moments of childish wickedness, defiance, jealousy, and envy Ersyla feels toward her friend, Bryony, and her familiy. These relatable emotions helped build to the inevitable hate, distrust, and revenge Ersyla feels by the end of the story. It also encourages the reader to sympathize with Ersyla as she struggles to overcome the poor, unfortunate outcome of her actions.
As always, Sullivan’s writing style, pace, tone, and the tension throughout the story kept me glued to my kindle screen. I’m so glad she’s decided to continue writing re-tellings. After reading Alice: The Wanderland Chronicles, I was anxious to get my hands on more of her work. I wasn’t disappointed!
I read and reviewed this book for my own enjoyment.
Summary via Amazon: “Jamie Watson has always been intrigued by Charlotte Holmes; after all, their great-great-great-grandfathers are one of the most infamous pairs in history. But the Holmes family has always been odd, and Charlotte is no exception. She’s inherited Sherlock’s volatility and some of his vices—and when Jamie and Charlotte end up at the same Connecticut boarding school, Charlotte makes it clear she’s not looking for friends. But when a student they both have a history with dies under suspicious circumstances, rippedstraight from the most terrifying of the Sherlock Holmes stories, Jamie can no longer afford to keep his distance. Danger is mounting and nowhere is safe—and the only people they can trust are each other.”
My Review: A fun, fast paced YA retelling of Sherlock Holmes and John Watson.
Save for a few long-winded paragraphs of narrative, there wasn’t anything I didn’t like about this book. I really liked Charlotte Holmes and Jamie Watson together. It’s great Holmes is a girl in this story. And though some readers criticize her as having the same personality and characteristics of Sherlock, I think that’s what I liked most about her.
For those who know the Holmes and Watson stories well, this might not be as exciting to read–or maybe you’ll like it even more. I can understand the desire for something new in a retelling. But, for me, this was a riveting adventure. I didn’t mind how it followed some of the original stories, since I didn’t know them well to begin with.
I picked this book up, read half of it in a day and finished it in only a few hours. The pacing is phenomenonal and the writing style makes it easy to read. There were a few info-dumpy paragraphs I skipped, but overall, I thoroughly enjoyed this one!