“Epic, musical, and tender.” Kirkus Reviews
Can’t You Hear It, Talia? Can’t You Hear the Waves Singing?
Sixteen-year-old Talia was born to a life of certainty and luxury, destined to become Empress of half the world. But when an ambitious rival seizes power, she and her mother are banished to a nowhere province on the far edge of the Northern Sea.
It is here, in the drafty halls of the Ruen Dahr,that Talia discovers family secrets, a melancholy boy with a troubling vision of her future, and a relic that holds the power of an ancient Star. On these shores, the eerie melody of the sea is stronger than ever, revealing long forgotten tales of the Goddess Rahn. The more dark truths that Talia unravels about the gods’ historyand her ownthe more the waves call to her, and it's her destiny to answer.
|Publisher:||Page Street Publishing|
|Product dimensions:||5.60(w) x 8.20(h) x 1.40(d)|
|Age Range:||12 Years|
About the Author
JOANNA RUTH MEYER lives with her dear husband and son in Mesa, Arizona, where it never rains (or at least not often enough for her!). When she’s not writing, she can be found teaching piano lessons, drinking copious amounts of tea, reading thick books, and dreaming of winter.Visit her at joannaruthmeyer.com, and follow her on Twitter @gamwyn.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
At its heart, BENEATH THE HAUNTING SEA is a story of how far one is willing to go for the ones they love. We see this in Talia’s brave search for her mother, trapped in the evil sea goddess Rahn’s Hall of the Dead, and in Wen’s loyal refusal to leave her side. I’m always attracted to books with a thread of mystical magic woven in, and a healthy dose of music, and this book has both. Meyer weaves together music, myth, and emotion so seamlessly, one can almost forget this is her debut novel. As a writer myself, I often find myself pulled out of stories, critiquing the author’s use of plot points, moments when characters make decisions I feel they shouldn’t, based on their established actions. From the first paragraph, SEA dragged me to the depths of the sea to dance forever with the Billow Maidens, and I never wanted to let go.
From its first page, THE HAUNTING SEA had me hooked. The eerie, isolated setting, crumbling manor house, and lushly built world combine to create an atmosphere somewhere between THE SILMARILLION and THE SECRET GARDEN. It's an odd pairing, I know, but you'll have to read the book to find out what I mean and why this analogy works so beautifully ;) Talia is a relatable heroine whose quiet strength and determination won me over very quickly. I'd especially recommend this book to those who loved THE SCORPIO RACES by Maggie Stiefvater--the remote island setting and gorgeous prose will definitely appeal to anyone who enjoyed the aforementioned. Fans of older, more classic fantasy with its rich world-building and well-developed mythologies will certainly find much to love in THE HAUNTING SEA as well. It feels like a throwback to the beloved older fantasies I grew up with, like the works of Tolkien or Peter Beagle's LAST UNICORN. I'll definitely be buying a copy of this the day it's out in print, to keep on my shelves for rainy, windswept days.
Beneath the Haunting Sea first landed on my TBR due to its stunning cover, and the more I heard about it, the more excited I became. I love books involving forgotten tales laced in magic and mystery, and I couldn't wait to see what Joanna had in store for us here. The Result? Combining an unforgettable world, fearless characters, and an age old mystery, Beneath the Haunting Sea is a fantastic read from start to finish. Beneath the Haunting Sea is told through Talia's perspective. When she is first introduced her life is delightfully ordinary. She has a good home, trustworthy friends, and a loving family. She feels safe and sound, and her personality reflects it. She's innocent, happy, and a tad bit mischievous. Everything changes, though, the moment Talia and her mother are accused of treason and banished from their kingdom. Suddenly, Talia, the girl who's never had a reason to be extraordinarily brave before, has to be fearless, bold, and tactful. She has to take charge and stand up for what she loves and believes in. I found Talia to be incredibly likable. My heart broke for her as she faced challenge after challenge; however, I was so proud when she began to get stronger. I will admit that Beneath the Haunting Sea is a slow-moving. Several times I put it aside and came back to it a few days later; however, this wasn't a bad thing, because, in my opinion, Beneath the Haunting Sea is a book to be savored not devoured in one swoop. Joanna slowly builds up Talia's world, the stories of the sea, and the foes and heroes to be found. The development is fantastic, and I appreciated every layer she introduced. The action slowly appears as well and builds up beautifully. By the end, I was racing through dying to know what would happen next. Now for the romance...Beneath the Haunting Sea contains two potential love interests. While normally potential love triangles send me running for the hills, I thought it worked well here. The two boys introduced were as different as night and day. One is caring and steadfast, always willing to offer a helping hand, and like Talia, he deals with his own demons. The other is passionate and wild, bring out the recklessness in Talia as well. While I did have a favorite out of the two - I won't say who - I enjoyed seeing both avenues explored and I was incredibly happy with the ending. Overall, Beneath the Haunting Sea is a lush and beautifully written addition to YA fantasy. Joanna Ruth Meyer is yet another 2018 debut author to keep an eye on, and I can't wait to see what she writes next.
When I first heard of Beneath the Haunting Sea, I was intrigued by the premise and in love with the cover (seriously, how gorgeous is it?). Once I started reading, I was utterly enchanted. This atmospheric story slowly draws you in and, before you know it, you're turning the last page. This is one of the few books where, after I picked it up, I couldn't put it down until I was done. The mythology is blended absolutely perfectly with the story. It evokes the feel of a classical fairy tale while still remaining a modern fantasy novel. The world-building is amazing, I loved how vividly I could picture the world. The story was described as The Silmarillion meets Jane Eyre and I think that's the absolute perfect description. The plot is so intriguing and surprising, I loved that it kept me guessing. Even though I didn't like Talia at the beginning, she grew on me. Her character arc is excellent. In general, all of the characters are nuanced and well-developed. There is a bit of a love triangle, which I usually dislike. However, this one felt more like one that Jane Austen would have written so I didn't mind as much. Just get ready for some feels! Beneath the Haunting Sea is one of those books that stayed with me long beyond the final page. It was beautifully written and I'm already looking forward to reading it again one day. I’d recommend this one to fantasy or mythology fans who are looking for a slower story that will subvert your expectations and enchant you. *Disclaimer: I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review