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A love-struck mermaid named Aquamarine supplies adventure and insights to two twelve-year-old ...
A love-struck mermaid named Aquamarine supplies adventure and insights to two twelve-year-old girls, life-long friends who are spending their last summer together before one of them moves away.
Despite the girls' fear of change, everything shifts with a summer storm. At the beach club the next morning, Hailey and Claire find that the storm has left its mark, filling the cloudy waters of the swimming pool with jellyfish and seaweed. Hailey boldly dives in and discovers that the waves have also brought a delicate blue and white mermaid who is extremely grouchy at her predicament. The girls scheme to return the fish-woman to the sea, but she obstinately refuses to leave the vicinity of Raymond, the handsome boy who runs the gift shop. Alarmed at the mermaid's growing weakness, Hailey and Claire extract her promise to go back to the sea in exchange for one evening with Raymond. They set up a blind date, dress her in a long blue dress to hide her tail, and take her to the rendezvous in a wheelchair. But the next morning the dying mermaid is in love, and the patio is full of partygoers. Can the girls sneak her past all those eyes to save her life? And will she let them? Young teens will be entranced by the strange dreaminess of this poignant little story about love and loss. -- Amazon.com
As they went through the entranceway to the Capri Beach Club, Hailey handed her friend a jar she'd stored in her backpack. Claire held the jar up to the light and tried her best to figure out what the slippery-looking things were inside.
"Herring," Hailey told her when Claire couldn't venture a guess. "It's a kind of marinated fish. I found it in the back of the pantry. Mermaids must get hungry. All we need to do is hide behind the diving board, and when she comes to the surface to eat, we can study her."
"Good plan," Claire said. At any other time, Claire would have been the one to come up with the plans, but lately she'd been up half the night, thinking about how her sweaters and boots would be pointless in Florida, and how the leaves wouldn't change in the fall, and how it would be summer all year long.
Hailey, herself, was somewhat surprised to find that she'd actually been the one with the ideas. "You really think it's a good plan?" she asked uncertainly.
"Excellent," Claire said, although she, too, was surprised at how quickly everything was changing already, even though it was still the same.
After they'd sprinkled the herring in the pool, the girls waited behind the diving board. Jellyfish floated on the surface of the water, and a few bubbles arose up from the deep, but there was no sign of the mermaid. Hours passed and the girls didn't move. Time was so slow, and the air was so hot, they almost fell asleep.
When they didn't show up at the snack bar for lunch, Raymond came looking for them.
"What happened to my only customers?" he asked. "I was worried. I thought the seagulls had carried you away."
Raymond sat on the edge of a lounge chair and gazed into the pool. He was so handsome that for a few minutes the girls forgot there was a mermaid nearby.
"What a disaster," Raymond said, looking around the beach club. "I should have taken a different job this summer, but I guess I got used to this place."
When he'd first come to the Capri, he'd been the assistant to the assistant cook at the snack bar, and at lunch time they'd all had to work like crazy just to fill the orders of hamburgers and sandwiches and fries. There were crowds of people and the air smelled like coconut-scented sunscreen. Not a single one of the chaise lounges would have been empty on a beautiful day such as this. But that was all in the past.
"I don't want it to end," Raymond admitted.
"We know," the girls said at the very same time. "Neither do we."
"Don't forget to come by and have a lemonade. My treat," Raymond said as he started back to the snack bar. "After all, there are only a few days left to the summer."
Hailey had always noticed that Raymond often read two books at a time, and Claire had always noticed that he was so kindhearted, he fed day-old bread to the seagulls that followed him as though he were their favorite person on earth. Now they both could tell he was almost as sad as they were about the Capri closing.
The girls had been watching Raymond so intently, it was a while before they realized that a mermaid had surfaced at the shallow end of the pool. Her hair was pale and silvery and her nails were a shimmering blue. Between each finger there was a thin webbing, of the sort you might find on a newborn seal or a duck.
"What are you two staring at?" the mermaid said, when she turned and saw the girls gaping.
Her voice was as cool and fresh as bubbles rising from the ocean. She was as beautiful as a pearl, with a faint turquoise tinge to her skin and eyes so blue they were the exact same color as the deepest sea. But her watery beauty didn't mean the mermaid knew her manners.
"Stop looking at me," she demanded, as she splashed at the girls. "Go away!"
The mermaid's name was Aquamarine and she was much ruder than most creatures you might find at sea. At sixteen, she was the youngest of seven sisters, and had always been spoiled. She'd been indulged and cared for and allowed to act up in ways no self-respecting mermaid ever would.
Her disagreeable temperament certainly hadn't improved after spending two nights in the pool, tossed there like a stone or a sea urchin at the height of the terrible storm. Chlorine had seeped into her sensitive skin and silver scales dropped from her long, graceful tail. She hadn't eaten anything more than a mouthful of that horrible herring the girls had strewn into the pool.
"You heard me," Aquamarine said to Hailey and Claire, who were mesmerized by her gleaming tail and by the way the mermaid could dive so quickly, she disappeared in a luminous flash. When she surfaced through the seaweed she was not pleased to see they were still there. "Scram," she said. "Stop bothering me."
The mermaid glided into the deep end of the pool, the better to see Raymond at the snack bar. She had been watching him ever since she found herself stranded in the pool. His was the first human face she saw. She gazed at him with a bewildered expression, the sure sign of a mermaid in love.
"They're closing the Capri at the end of the week. The pool is going to be drained," Hailey called to Aquamarine. "You're going to have to go back to where you came from by Saturday."
The mermaid started to pay attention. "Where will the people go?"
"What people?" Hailey said. "Everyone's already gone except for us."
"Not exactly." Claire nodded toward Raymond. "Not everyone."
"He's going on Saturday, too," Hailey said. "He's leaving for college."
As soon as Aquamarine heard this, she began to cry blue, freshwater tears. No mermaid wants to fall in love with a human, but it was already too late for poor Aquamarine to be sensible. A sensible mermaid never would have wandered away from her sisters during a storm the way Aquamarine had.
As for Hailey and Claire, they couldn't know that a mermaid in love is far more irrational than a jellyfish and more stubborn than a barnacle. "You'll just have to go back to the ocean," they advised her.
"I'm not going anywhere." Aquamarine's pale complexion flushed blue as she pouted. "I won't leave before I meet him."
Up at the snack bar, Raymond was whistling a tune as he cleaned up the counter. Aquamarine tilted her head to listen, hearkening to what she clearly believed was the most beautiful melody anyone had ever been privileged to hear, either on land or at sea.
"Oh," she sighed as she watched Raymond. Her elbows rested on the edge of the pool. Her sea-blue eyes were dreamy. "If he only knew how I felt about him."
"I really don't think he's your type," Claire said as politely as she could.
Aquamarine looked stricken. She had never been denied anything she wanted. "Of course he is," she said.
"Well, for one thing, he lives on land," Hailey reminded the mermaid.
"You are both so mean," Aquamarine cried. "You're meaner than my sisters, and probably just as jealous."
Since she'd been swept up by the storm and set down at the Capri, Aquamarine had felt a taste of freedom. More important than the terrible food and the chlorinated pool was the idea that she could do whatever she pleased. She tossed her head and fixed the girls with her sea-blue eyes. "No one can tell me what to do anymore. Not my sisters and certainly not you. Anyway, it's too late. I've already made up my mind. I'm staying right here for as long as I want to. And no one can tell me otherwise!"
At the end of the day, the girls ran to Claire's grandfather's car and when he said "What's new, Susie Q's?" they let out a gale of giggles, convinced that no one would believe that they'd stumbled upon a mermaid who refused to behave. When they got to Claire's grandparents' house, they raced past the half-packed boxes in the living room and looked through the crates of books in Claire's room, hoping to find a solution for Aquamarine's predicament. Although they discovered references to many unusual creatures of the deep, from dolphins that were said to rescue lost sailors to sea-serpents twice the size of a whale, they couldn't unearth a single bit of advice on what to do with a mermaid who'd fallen in love.
I still believe what we experience from the ages of 10 to 14 stays with us with unmatched intensity. For this reason, I wanted to write for this age group, and Aquamarine's story began as a tale told to my own son while we floated in a turquoise pool one hot summer day. It had been a difficult time for our family. My sister-in-law, Jo Ann, who had been my dear friend from the time we were 19, was battling brain cancer. As she grew weaker she lost the ability to walk, and then to move at all. She became taken with mermaids, those beautiful creatures who have no need of legs or of the air we breathe. We brought Jo Ann mermaid jewelry and mermaid mobiles and mermaid postcards, and now, at last, I bring to her memory the story of Aquamarine, who, like Jo Ann, hasn't the ability to live in our everyday world.
Some things live forever however, love and friendship among them. And some summers stay with you forever, as well. Here is the story of a mermaid found by two best friends who will clearly never lose one another.
Posted November 21, 2012
Wow! This book is fantastic as soon as I started to read it i could not put the book down. I saw the movie and it was good but not up to par with this book! You have to read it
2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted November 25, 2009
I Also Recommend:
I saw the movie and am hoping to read the book. But whoever said that the movie was wayyy better(uhem, some anonomous person), there's something wrong with them. The book is always, I repeat, always better than the movie. Always. Take Twilight for example. It was a great book with excellent writing. But the movie was aweful. I absolutley hated the movie. Ugh. "Don't judge a book by its movie!"-K.W.
1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted January 20, 2008
ok, i'm sorry to the people who liked the book, but this was probably the worst book i have read for a long time. there is no plot, and it's really short. do not read this book, it's a waste of time.
1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted December 30, 2007
Posted February 28, 2006
this is a great book that i really enjoyed and i think anyone who likes mermaids should read it. and if you like a love story.in this one the mermaid wnats a date with a human boy. it is so awsome
1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted September 20, 2010
Posted October 8, 2008
This book was OKay. The movie was WAY better. I thought the book was going to be better than the movie. It is still a pretty good book but i thought it was going to be way better. Like i said it was OKAY.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted July 21, 2008
Aquamarine is a great book. Two best friends stumble upon a mermaid, not in the ocean but in a deserted pool. Aquamarine finds herself falling in love with a man working at the the pool. This is a truly touching story. I highly recommend this book.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted March 28, 2008
when i was little i loved this book, i would read it on days end, wondering if a mermaid would get her love or if to best friends wouldnt be seperated... if you have seen the movie and liked it i am pretty sure you will like the book, because the book was a lot better.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted March 21, 2007
Posted March 29, 2007
this book is super easy and you can rip through it in a few days but its still good if u need a break. however it is way too easy to be at a grade 6 level, and i read it in 5th gradeWas this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted January 28, 2007
This book was terrible! It takes two minintes to read, I really wanted to read it so i bought it and read it in the car going to NY. This was a waste of my money there was no point at all.Of all the books I've reviwed this is the only one with only one star! Don't waste your money on this it ends awful as well. BOO!!!Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted November 16, 2006
This is the best book i have read in a long time so i highly recomend you read this book i think you will really enjoy it! you don't even have to really like mermaids to read this book it has many suprising THINGS THAT YOU WOULD HAVE NEVER SUSPECTEDWas this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted November 14, 2006
Posted October 27, 2006
I'm sorry to say that when my friend let me borrow this book, I was sooo happy that I finally getting to read this. But now, after reading it, i think this book had NO plot whatsoever, and it was sorta babyish that she only really stayed in the human world 3 days. Unlike the movie, Hailey and Claire didn't get a wish and she didn't stay more than 3 days, and she didnt have a good reason to be where she is. Don't read this, unless you like plotless booksWas this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted August 21, 2006
This book gave me alot of thought about if the author really belived in mermaids. Also I enjoyed how Alice Hoffman used such great discription that it felt as if I was there exsperincing all of it. This book gave readers a feel about being unnormal, weather you were someone who was diffrent or even a mermaid like Aquamarine.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted August 9, 2006
I saw the movie a little while ago and then decited to read the book. Aquamarine, by Alice Hoffman was just so-so. It was really short and took me about a half-hour to read. Sometimes short books aren't bad books but this one, well there just hasn't much feeling put into it. I enjoyed the movie much better which I quite seldom that I choose the films over books but in this case it's true. In the book the charector Aquamarine was set as a snobby, and really kind of an unlikable person. Where as in the movie she seems a lot nicer. Watch the movie instead!Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted September 27, 2006
Posted September 30, 2006
Posted July 20, 2006
I LOVE THIS BOOK IT IS NOTHING LIKE THE MOVIE THIS ONE IS EVEN BETTER ! I RECOMMEND IT 2 EVERYONE WHO READS THIS! tHIS BOOK IS GOOD FOR KIDS MAINLY OF THE AGES 10-13.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.