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Ingo (Ingo #1)

3.93  ·  Rating Details  ·  7,626 Ratings  ·  638 Reviews
I wish I was away in Ingo, Far across the sea, Sailing over the deepest waters, Where love nor care can trouble me...

Sapphire's father mysteriously vanishes into the waves off the Cornwall coast where her family has always lived. She misses him terribly, and she longs to hear his spellbinding tales about the Mer, who live in the underwater kingdom of Ingo. Perhaps that is
Paperback, 320 pages
Published May 2nd 2006 by Harper Collins Children's Books (first published August 11th 2005)
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(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Dec 14, 2008 EMi rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: i-own
Ingo is a delightful story full of beautifully serene imagery and magic. It’s a children’s book, yes, but it captured my attention and I’m very glad to have come across it.

It’s about an eleven-year-old girl and her older brother who lose their father one day when he takes out his boat and disappears. The children are the only two people in town (with the exception of Granny Carne) who believe that he is still alive. They discover an underwater world called Ingo, where they meet Faro and Elvira,
I love mermaids, but I'm having some trouble finding a really good mermaid book. This one was especially disappointing since a friend and fellow mermaid fan recommended it to me. Sadly, it just didn't work, although it's really not a bad book.

I'll do the good first. The basic plotline itself was interesting, and could have been really engaging. The short version: Sapphire and Conor's father disappears. (The book is written in Saph's POV) They are convinced that he's still alive, just vanished. E
Lindsay Tramble
Jul 09, 2011 Lindsay Tramble rated it it was amazing
I've never read a book that painted a picture as well as Ingo did. I read it several years ago, but Cornwall, England has stuck in my mind ever since. The story centers on the life of twelve-year old Sapphire and her older brother, Conor, and how they find an underwater world in their town's cove. The book was part of a four-story series, but it was definitely the strongest novel of the bunch. I'd reccomend it to anyone who knows how to read.

Sapphire and Conor live in a small beachside house, a
Sep 29, 2008 Aerin rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: the Little Mermaid (the faery tale, not the Disney movie), the Tale of Emily WIndsnap
Shelves: middle-grade, 2008
When Sapphire's father disappears, most people say he's been drowned, although the more vicious of the townspeople say he ran off with another woman. But neither Sapphy or her brother Conor believe either story. Raised on the coast of Cornwall, they have an intimate connection to the sea and her mysteries. Neither of them realizes quite how intimate. When Sapphire feels an irresistible call to the ocean, she must choose where her loyalties lie - to her Air family and the brother whom she
Sariah the Authoress
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Barbara Gordon
May 10, 2012 Barbara Gordon rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Apr 16, 2008 Jen rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: pre-teens who don't usually like fantasy
Shelves: ya-fiction
This book didn't feel like fantasy: it felt more like your typical girl-dealing-with-loss-of-a-parent story, only with a mermaid or two thrown in. I realized that the loss-of-parent thing is very relevant today, what with divorce rates being what they are, but the formula gets irritatingly predictable. Here it is in a nutshell: 1)parent dies or leaves 2) remaining parent starts dating someone new 3) child hates the "replacement" parent 4) over time, child starts to accept both the loss of the fi ...more
Nov 01, 2010 Olivia rated it it was amazing
First of all just look at this cover! Is this not the most beautiful thing you have ever seen!?
Ingo was a brilliant novel, being the first mermaid fictional novel I have actually ever read! (I know I know.) It was a really refreshing read after much darker novels that seem to sworm the YA department these days. The charecters that Helen Dunmore has created are totally believable, and are bursting with personality.

Written in first person was also a nice touch, as we really got to delve deeper int
Oct 13, 2015 Kogiopsis rated it it was ok
Shelves: reviewed
This book... the best way to describe it, I think, is that despite predating A Monster Calls, it wants to be AMC - a lyrical, mythical, semi-allegorical exploration of death and coping mechanisms. The problem is that Ingo also wants to be an adventure book about exciting fun times under the ocean, and you really can't have those themes co-exist in one novel.

It starts out as a story about Sapphire's strained family, culminating in her dad going for a late night jaunt in his boat and never returni
Claire - The Coffeeholic Bookworm
Ingo follows the life and secrets revolving around a girl named Sapphire and her love for the sea. Her father had gone missing, supposedly taken by the ocean. A year after his disappearance, her mother began dating a new man, which dismayed Sapphire and her brother.

Her dad was mysteriously named after a local man who was believed to have drowned years ago and was captured by mermaids. The townfolks believed this same fate befell her dad. Against their mother's orders, she and her brother Connor
Kaleigh Hvizdos
Sep 03, 2011 Kaleigh Hvizdos rated it did not like it
I hated this book. As soon as I was finished reading it, I sent it to my library's used book store.
The main characters were frustrating right down to Saphire's name, and by the time the merpeople were finally revealed, it was too little too late for my taste. I also think this falls victim to series cliches of not exposing enough of the "mysteries" to keep me satisfied with the intent of saving it for later books. It definitely
spins its wheels" to where not enough happens. I skimmed through the
Mar 02, 2008 Holly rated it did not like it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Reading Vacation
Mar 09, 2011 Reading Vacation rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition


I love reading mermaid books. There are not very many of them, so I cherish the few that I can get my hands (and eyes) on. Ingo is no exception.

Ingo is the name of the magical underwater world where the mermaids (and mermen) live. You don’t see much of it in the book, but the descriptions that are in there, are amazing. I am betting there is more detail about this amazing world in the next book.

This book is told from Sapphire’s point of view. She is spunky and loyal to her brother, Conor.
Jul 14, 2012 Stina rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy
I discovered this series by pure luck. I found the second book on one of the tables in the YA section of chapters. It was all colourful and shiny so I picked it up (wow...I'm such a bird). I Bought the book that day not realizing it was the second book. So I went back and got the first one, which was rather difficult because as it turns out-the series is suppose to be in the 9-12 section. ANyways...This book is by a british woman (Just another piece of proof that they are the best writers) and i ...more
“Ingo’s a place that has many names, ” says Granny Carne. “You can call it Mer, Mare, or Meor…Earth and Ingo don’t mix, even though we live side by side. Earth and Ingo aren’t always friends…”

Despite Granny Carne’s words, in Helen Dunmore’s fantastic fantasy Earth and Ingo do mix–with consequences. Ingo is set partially above ground in modern day Cornwall and partially below the surface of the water in Ingo.

Ingo features Sapphire Trewhella (also known as Saph or Sapphy). Sapphy takes after her f
Sep 15, 2014 Pinto rated it really liked it
It was a great book. Although the end was a bit sad. Other than that, the character had many great adventures.
Jul 14, 2016 Anisha rated it really liked it
This book isn't something that I would pick up but my librarian recommended it to me and I thought I would give it a go. However I do love Mer and Mermaid things related.

At first I thought it wouldn't be good but as soon as it got on I couldn't stop reading it. I wouldn't even stop to sleep but I had to. I finished it more or less within day.

Faro and Conner are slightly confusing at times as well as annoying. I mean their attitudes changes within a few moments. Like Faro gets angry over somethi
I wouldn't necessarily recommend this book to my friends, despite the mermaids, and dolphins not to forget - who were awesome. The story just doesn't really make sense and then there are the many typos - which frustrated me a lot haha. However, I did add the other books from this series to my to-read list. Just in case I run out of books to read. It is just a nice book to read in one go. But nothing more.
Jan 26, 2015 Caro rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mer
This was an ok book. I'd noticed it on the library shelf and it had a mermaid on it. Woo-hoo. Now that I've read it though, my enthusiasm has waned. The characters were good and the plot was there, but this book just couldn't pull me in. I felt like I was reading and I had to make myself finish. There are still lots of stuff I don't understand and I'm not going to read the rest of the series. This felt confusing and slow to me. I don't know if it's because of the age group it's targeted at but I ...more
Mar 15, 2016 Abigail rated it it was amazing
Sapphire's dad dissapeared there. Her brother is gone for hours because of it. And now the sea is pulling her too; to the world of Ingo.
Zoe Smith
Feb 18, 2012 Zoe Smith rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Mermaid Lovers, YA, Children,
Recommended to Zoe by: Nobody
"Everything is wet and shining with mist. The rocks hidden, the sea bidden. Everything slippery and dangerous... the sea pulling me like a magnet."
Swimming, surfing, exploring - Sapphire and her brother Conor enjoy life by the sea in Cornwall. But why does Conor start disappearing for hours on end? And who is the mysterious girl talking to him on the rocks?
Following Conor down to the cove one day, Sapphire discovers Ingo - an exciting and dangerous world beneath the waves, where all you breathe
Feb 02, 2012 Caitriona rated it liked it
I'd love to say I loved this book. I'd love to say it was every bit as magical and wonderful as I'd hoped. But, alas, I can't.
I'd love to find a decent mermaid book, and hoped I'd find it in 'Ingo' - but it was too flawed. I'll soften the blow with good news first - I did like the whole Jacqueline Wilson-esque 'missing Dad, horrible stepdad' plotline. You really got the idea just how much Sapphy knew in her heart that her Dad was alive, and her annoyance that nobody else seemed to think so.
May 13, 2013 BookwormJayde rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
Ingo is a great book that I have just recently finished. The story begins with the midsummer festival. Sapphy's father is then lost at sea. However, Sapphy and her brother Conor feel as if their father is still alive. A year passes, and it is summer vacation. Sapphy and her brother spend every day at their cove. Conor starts to go missing- away for large periods of time. One day Sapphy goes find him, and is surprised to know that Conor feels as if he's only been gone for a short time. When Conor ...more
Nov 17, 2011 Hayley rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Pretty much perfect. This is the right way to tell a mermaid tale. I have basically nothing to complain about, which, if you have read any of my other reviews, is a rarity.

Ingo if full of likable and realistically flawed characters. Sapphy is a plucky, smart young girl with a temper. Her close relationship with her older brother, Conor, is sweet, as is her devotion to her missing father. The strained relationship with her mother is very well done and realistic without being totally hostile-- the
Rosie Monson
Jun 03, 2012 Rosie Monson rated it really liked it
Shelves: book-influence
I read it when I was little. It was amazing. I don't think it was because of the writing though it was different and good. It was probably the first book I read that was written in the present tense instead of the past tense. Ex: instead of 'I climbed the wall' it's 'I climb the wall'. Anyway, I think it was because of the story itself and the imagination that seemed to ooze out of it and into my mind. it was so creative. and so real. How I know a book is a good one, is when it makes me believe ...more
Nov 27, 2011 Lucy rated it liked it
Shelves: 2011-reads
Ingo is a tale of magic and adventure in which the sea itself is at odds with the land and our narrator feels herself torn between two worlds.

Dunmore's narrator, Sapphy, lives with her family on the clifftops of Cornwall, just a few minutes' walk from the sea. Sapphy loves Cornwall, but after her father's disappearance she finds herself drawn away from the land and into the depths of the sea, into Ingo. Dunmore writes two beautifully atmospheric settings - Cornwall and the magical fantasy world
April Izzard
Jan 25, 2013 April Izzard rated it it was amazing
I highly recommend this book, for younger children. I have written a review which doesn't give away any details about the book that would ruin it. Instead I celebrate it; for being such a special book to me.

Read on for more.

I remember reading this when I was much younger, about 11 or 12 years old. It has been a memorable book that I won't ever forget. The fantasy that surrounds being a mermaid, something I (and i am sure many other young children) have always wished I could, was described impec
Dec 06, 2011 Crystal rated it it was amazing
What an enchanting book! Not since the Harry Potter series have I read a young adult urban fantasy book that blends the line between the fantasy and "real" world so smoothly. Perhaps it's because Ingo is real too?
I felt like each of the characters was skillfully drawn, with a sharp understanding of who they were, but with room to grow. I could relate to both Sapphy and Conor. Their dad, for as long as he was around, was a nice guy, and their mom is a nice enough person with a lot of responsibili
Elizabeth Emily Browne
Mar 09, 2015 Elizabeth Emily Browne rated it really liked it
I love mermaids and fantasy stories. I'm quickly learning that it's my favourite genre and plan to read more of it!

Anyway back to the book. I go is a beautifully written book. It does have some rough patches and parts are slow going but they seem to smooth themselves out and in the end it's worth the wait and picks up. I go is a gorgeous tale. I love Sapphire.

Not one of my favourite books I've read this year but still good!

8 out of 10.
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My Opinion :

You'd think that , with all the scientific discoveries, scientifics would have discovered Ingo... but no.

Ingo was a great book.

Helen Dunmore, the author, wasa ble to create a whole new word where readers couldn't find a flaw (by that I mean with the construction of the world, the world itself).

Ingo is actually not a too much terrifying concept, because I absolutely love to swim, but now it got m
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Sapphire 2 28 Dec 27, 2013 01:26PM  
Ingo 19 62 Jul 22, 2012 11:55AM  
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I was born in December 1952, in Yorkshire, the second of four children. My father was the eldest of twelve, and this extended family has no doubt had a strong influence on my life, as have my own children. In a large family you hear a great many stories. You also come to understand very early that stories hold quite different meanings for different listeners, and can be recast from many viewpoints ...more
More about Helen Dunmore...

Other Books in the Series

Ingo (5 books)
  • Tide Knot (Ingo, #2)
  • The Deep (Ingo, #3)
  • The Crossing of Ingo (Ingo, #4)
  • Stormswept (Ingo, #5)

Share This Book

“I wish I was away in Ingo
Far across the briny sea
Sailing over deepest waters
Where neither care nor worry trouble me.”
“As long as you two look out for each other, you’ll be safe enough.” 3 likes
More quotes…