{Leah Reviews} The Wicked Deep by Shea Ernshaw

Posted May 14, 2018 by Leah in Reviews / 2 Comments

{Leah Reviews} The Wicked Deep by Shea Ernshaw

The Wicked Deep


by Shea Ernshaw
Pages: 308
Published on March 6, 2018
by Simon Pulse
Genres: Paranormal, Romance, Young Adult
Format: ARC
Source: Gifted
Goodreads

Also by this author: Winterwood

Welcome to the cursed town of Sparrow…

Where, two centuries ago, three sisters were sentenced to death for witchery. Stones were tied to their ankles and they were drowned in the deep waters surrounding the town.

Now, for a brief time each summer, the sisters return, stealing the bodies of three weak-hearted girls so that they may seek their revenge, luring boys into the harbor and pulling them under.

Like many locals, seventeen-year-old Penny Talbot has accepted the fate of the town. But this year, on the eve of the sisters’ return, a boy named Bo Carter arrives; unaware of the danger he has just stumbled into.

Mistrust and lies spread quickly through the salty, rain-soaked streets. The townspeople turn against one another. Penny and Bo suspect each other of hiding secrets. And death comes swiftly to those who cannot resist the call of the sisters.

But only Penny sees what others cannot. And she will be forced to choose: save Bo, or save herself.

2.5 Stars

The Wicked Deep had a plot that seemed right up my alley. Paranormal mysteries in YA are rare, and the ideas presented looked spooky. (Plus, the cover is BEAUTIFUL!) But alas, this was not what I was expecting.

The strength is the atmosphere. It’s easy to imagine this seaside town of Sparrow. You can feel the mist, you can hear the waves, you can taste the salt in the air. It’s a foreboding, oppressive place for our narrator, Penny. I was relishing the details. The myth of the Swan sisters who haunt the island was eerie and intriguing. I really liked this world.

However, the characters were just never fully fleshed out. We’re given brief descriptions of people; they look like ___, this guy is a jerk, this guy is okay, this is a mean girl. Never did I fully connect with anyone, not even Penny. Since she’s grieving for her father and her emotionally absent mother, that, to me, could have been the main theme of the book. You have to have that connection with the protagonist, especially when using 1st person narration. I wanted to care about Penny and her story. When Bo, a boy new to Sparrow, arrives, the plot shifts to heavy instalove romance. Penny’s never let herself get close to anyone, and since Bo is new, I understand her fascination. Romance is fine, but since there is a lot going on with the plot, it becomes a distraction. The mystery of which girl is really possessed by a Swan sister takes a back seat.

The book is split between Penny’s 1st person narration and flashbacks to 3rd person for the Swan sisters (I’ve checked the finished copy and it’s still formatted like this). Either of these points of view could have stood on its own if given more time to develop. If the book had been strictly from either the Swan sisters or Penny’s narration with the mystery, it could have been a moving, strong novel.

Leah
Leah

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