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The Summer of Chasing Mermaids

3.84  ·  Rating details ·  5,792 ratings  ·  878 reviews

The youngest of six talented sisters, Elyse d'Abreau was destined for stardom - until a boating accident took everything from her. Now, the most beautiful singer in Tobago can't sing. She can't even speak.

Seeking quiet solitude, Elyse accepts a friend's invitation to Atargatis Cove. Named for the mythical first mermaid, the Oregon seaside to
Hardcover, 399 pages
Published June 2nd 2015 by Simon Schuster Books for Young Readers (first published June 1st 2015)
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CapesandCovers The current release day is set for June 2nd.
Lenni Jones
This answer contains spoilers… (view spoiler)

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This book, you guys. THIS. BOOK. It's the holy-shit-my-brain-just-died kind of amazing. This is not a hyperbole--I'm a hundred percent serious.

First off, we have such an amazing heroine, Elyse. She's from the Caribbean and is a person of color, and she lost her voice in an accident that happened before the events in the book. Aside from being an amazingly diverse character, Elyse also proved to be such a strong, supportive and realistic main character. You are going to love the way she cares for
I blinked hard when I finished The Summer of Chasing Mermaids, both because of the sheer perfection of this novel and in a tireless effort to keep at bay the waves of emotion that Sarah Ockler's "Acknowledgements" section had inspired. Then, after a long moment of contemplation, I turned back to the beginning of the novel and re-read it, cover-to-cover, even more slowly and with ever more deliberation than before; desperately trying to make the experience last a lifetime, not a mere few hours.

Nov 17, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)  ·  review of another edition
When it comes to my books, it's not that I have favorites, per se... but if I did, The Summer of Chasing Mermaids would be it. :-) Seaside town, flawed but loyal girlfriends, major life transitions, family struggles, a bit of mermaid lore, inspiration from The Little Mermaid (both Disney's adaptation and the original Hans Christian Andersen tale), and of course -- falling in love! I can't wait to share Elyse's story with you! ...more
Alienor ✘ French Frowner ✘

Yet another book I feel like I'm too old for, because I'm pretty sure a lot of readers will love it, and with reasons, really. Frankly, I would finish it if I had more reading time lately, but what can I say? I can't right now. For real? This is a meh 2-3 material to me, nothing more, because rip the (great) diversity vibes off, what do you get? Another broken girl in need for an equal broken loverboy guy for them to fix each other.


What makes me want to finish it

✔ The writing
Sue (Hollywood News Source)
Actual Ratings: 4.5 stars

What if you already have your life planned ahead of you, and suddenly a tragedy robbed you of your dream? of your voice? of your ability to stand up for yourself? For your love ones? How do you move on? How do you live?

The Summer of Chasing Mermaids follow the story of Elyse, a girl from Tobago who decided to take refuge in Atargatis Cove after an accident that damaged her voice permanently. As the story progress she will see that her voice is something that comes with
See more reviews at YA Midnight Reads

4.5 stars

If I were to list all the reasons why I think everyone should read The Summer of Chasing Mermaids, we'd be here till we all were just a pile of skin and bones. Since I don't want that to happen, here's just 5 of the main reasons why Sarah Ockler's new book is glorious:

1. It's a contemporary novel that's a loose retelling of The Little Mermaid. Do I need to say more? Surely that has already got you jumping up and down in your seat because that's exact
Chelsea ✨Arielle’s Nebular Ally and Team Acrux✨

When one dream burns to ash, you don't crumble beneath it. You get on your hands and knees, and you sift through those ashes until you find the very last ember, the very last spark.
Then you breathe.
You breathe.
You fucking
And you make a new fire.

Oh dear sweet baby Jesus...this was just too good. You know when you start a book and you think, aw shit, this is so weird. Well...if ever a book started out oddly and made me emulate Anna's french frown, this one was it. I don't know about y
Hazel (Stay Bookish)

Perfectly gorgeous prose, wonderful characters, a touching story. This one is a YA must-read!






Paula M
Nov 04, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: arc, for-review
This is my first from Sarah Ockler and don't worry because I'm trying to fix this problem by purchasing her previous novels...... so you can stop with the potato throwing now.

The moment I saw the cover of this novel, I know I want it. It was love at first sight. And then I read the synopsis and if it's possible, I just fell for the book even more. And then positive reviews started coming in that made me want to read the book even more. I think I was gonna combust from want.

And this, I found
Siiri (Little Pieces of Imagination)

You can now listen to my fanmix for The Summer of Chasing Mermaids on 8tracks [listen]. See the tracklist here .

It’s the hardest ever to write a review for a book that has blown your mind in every way possible; climbed its way into the deepest parts of your heart and soul. How could I ever do justice to this inspiring story, its amazing, well-fleshed characters, a beautiful narration, magnificent setting and so, so much more?! The Summer of Chasing Mermaids was initially one of my most antici
nick (the infinite limits of love)
The Summer of Chasing Mermaids by Sarah Ockler is the kind of YA contemporary read that drains you emotionally after you turn the last page, but also leaves you with an intense feeling of satisfaction and love. I knew from the very beginning that this would be a book that thoroughly charmed me and I was right.

Sarah Ockler proves once again that she excels at characterization with this book. Elyse was one beautiful character and for her and I, it was absolute love at first encounter. Having lost
Danielle (Love at First Page)
When one dream burns to ash, you don't crumble beneath it. You get on your hands and knees, and you sift through those ashes until you find the very last ember, the very last spark.
Then you breathe.
You breathe.
You fucking breathe.

When I first heard that Sarah Ockler was writing a loosely-based, contemporary version of The Little Mermaid, I couldn't have been more thrilled. It was my favorite Disney movie growing up (I still know all the lyrics to "Part of Your World"), and I believe a message ab
This was my first Sarah Ockler book, and I’m glad that it lived up to expectations. Ockler paints a gorgeous West Coast landscape to bring to life a story of finding the power and strength to make your voice heard. Elyse, the main character, is a Tobagonian girl who has had her beautiful singing (and speaking) voice ripped away from her in an accident. Elyse was destined to be a great singer along with her twin sister, but has now escaped to the coast of Oregon as refuge while she rebuilds her s ...more
May 18, 2015 rated it liked it
***Review posted on The Eater of Books! blog***

The Summer of Chasing Mermaids by Sarah Ockler
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Publication Date: June 2, 2015
Rating: 3 stars
Source: eARC from Edelweiss

Summary (from Goodreads):

From the bestselling author of Twenty Boy Summer, a talented singer loses her ability to speak after a tragic accident, leading her to a postcard-perfect seaside town to find romance.

The youngest of six talented sisters, Elyse d’Abreau was destined for stardom—until a boating accident to
The FountainPenDiva, Old school geek chick and lover of teddy bears
Even though I still think the "rich guy heartbreaker" trope has been done to death in too many YA and NA books, I am still giving The Summer of Chasing Mermaids five stars (and I wish I could give it more). I wish I could give a copy to every YA/NA author who thinks slut shaming, whitewashing, and flunking the Bechtel Test somehow makes for compelling reading.

This year hasn't been great for my IR romance reading habit. Between the colorism fail and the endlessly tired tropes of billionaires and
Dec 07, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: needs-review
I actually finished this quite some time ago, but I need to write a review of it. In short, beautiful read and I loved the characters and story. I'm not exactly sure on my rating, probably 4 to 4.5 stars. ...more
Jul 25, 2015 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I know 2 stars won't do any justice to the book, but i seriously found myself trapped in the book unable , in any way, to move forward with it...

Starting off, the writing of the book is just absolutely beautiful. I love metaphors and the book was full of them.. Here goes one of my favorite

"This boy wore the ocean in his eyes."

I mean this definitely goes to this young man, if you know who he is lol


Here's another one for the show


Such a fine man *insert fangirl emoji*

back to the book. . . Al
Lauren  (TheBookishTwins)
An absolutely fantastic read. THE SUMMER OF CHASING MERMAIDS has a lovely romance, a strong protagonist, feminist messages and exceptional character development. A must read.
Jul 27, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I am a little bit of a black sheep when it comes to THE SUMMER OF CHASING MERMAIDS. I enjoyed many aspects of this book, but I struggled to form an emotional connection with it or fully root for the romance, which was a big part of the novel.
“The girl who’d written volumes on the walls
but never said a word."

Elyse, having lost her voice in an accident, was a bit hard for me to connect to, not because her feelings weren’t expressed through dialogue, but because I could not relate to her action
Elyse was just too cute, so was Christian and Sebastian. Actually most of the characters in this novel are extremely likeable. I pretty much flew through this. And that’s coming from the longest hiatus and reading block I’ve ever had. The story is simple, yet it was also inspiring. Having a character with a known disability was tough, but it worked so well. I liked how the characters all supported one another and how well they communicated with one another. Bonus points for making the main chara ...more
Lisa (lifeinlit)
Jul 31, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: e-arc, 2015
“Love didn’t save me; it changed me. Changed me into someone who could save myself.”

The first time I experienced Sarah Ockler’s writing was while reading Twenty Boy Summer back in 2011. This book was one of the first YA books I read and reviewed after starting my blog, and I fell for it. HARD! I loved Sarah’s writing, they way she brought out all of the emotions in such a raw and real way. She’s an extremely talented author, and I now realized that I seriously need to read more of her books! I h
Jan 03, 2015 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: worst-books-ever
This is my least favorite book. Ever.

Elyse was so whiny and pretentious I could barely take it. I'm in awe that I actually finished it. Everything about this was trying too hard. I absolutely hated it.

Here's the thing: Elyse was written like she's supposed to be this mysterious, beautiful, ethereal woman... At 17 year's old. The book opens with this flowery, purple prose about how Elyse belongs to the sea, etc, etc, and has no control over her destiny, blah, blah, blah. It was painful. I shoul
4.5 stars

This was a story with some gorgeous prose. The idea was interesting and the way Sarah captured this little slice of time was damn near perfection.

Elyse is quite an interesting MC. She's poetic and lovely and underneath it all is a pain so strong it's palpable while reading. Christian intrigued me right from the start, but I'll let you find those swoons on your own. Hands down, the best character was Sebastian. He's the sweetest kid I've ever read in a book and I wanted to squeeze him at
Rashika (is tired)
***This review has also been posted on The Social Potato

Two years ago (I cannot believe it’s been that long), I read and fell in love with The Book of Broken Hearts. I knew Ockler was definitely an author whose future books I would want to devour and The Summer of Chasing Mermaids reminded me why I fell in love with The Book of Broken Hearts so long ago (okay kind of a while ago :P).

This is a beautifully written book that makes me want to do the monkey, makes me want to highfive the author and i
Megan  (thebookishtwins)
I loved loved loved The Summer of Chasing Mermaids. For starters, i'm a sucker for cute, fluffy, slow burn romances. Which this had plenty of. It is a retelling of The Little Mermaid which I also love. It has such a beautiful prose, which is another bonus. It's diverse, and has some really great messages. Elyse is disabled having just lost her voice, which she is still grieving with, and the novel is about her coming to terms with that loss, and figuring out how to cope with it. Wonderful friend ...more
Very often, these days, we’re talking about Quiet YA. While everyone seems to have their own interpretation of the term, most will agree that Quiet YA refers to the underdogs. The books that need more attention and fly under the radar. Maybe this is what the term was supposed to mean when it was initially coined. But I’d like to take that one step further.

The Summer of Chasing Mermaids, to me, was Quiet YA. I can’t talk about how well the book is doing in the market, or the response it’s garneri
Mar 05, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: poc-heroines

This book is so beautiful and packs such a power message. I love how diverse this book was, and that it was a sex positive YA book but most importantly I love how realistic and at times, painful this book was to read.

These characters aren't perfect and while we do see some character development, this book isn't about making these characters perfect again. It's about how perfectly imperfect we are as humans. How sometimes there are people who aren't nice and do bad things and even though we wish
Nereyda (Nick & Nereyda's Infinite Booklist)
I'm late to the Sarah Ockler party, having only read The Book of Broken Hearts last year (loved it!). But I knew I wanted to read this one as soon as I heard about it. I do admit that this book took a little while to get into, I think it was mostly the writing that I had to adjust to. It was very poetic and lyrical and beautiful and I was just a little bit thrown off at first. I also wasn't sure at first if this had any mythical ties to it (with all the mermaid references) or if it was a contemp ...more
I loved this - such a strong sense of place, a really thoroughly developed relationship that doesn't go through the typical Romance paces, and an incredibly strong sense of culture and the main character's childhood. Not to mention just being a solidly feminist and sex-positive book, with - am I allowed to say a YA has a hot masturbation scene? Is that weird? OK, cool, let's pretend that didn't happen.

I continue to be so impressed by Sarah Ockler's range, and the risks she takes in delivering b
Sep 08, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Reaaaaaaaaally surprised me in a good way. Well, I shouldn't be surprised because Sarah Ockler is ALWAYS awesome. But the "is this contemporary or is this mythical in some way" (mermaids!!!) bit threw me off.

Oh, and by the way, I still don't REALLY know the answer to that.

But who cares. This book sucked me in with beautiful and beachy writing that just had me smelling the salty air. Loved the Ariel-esque bits but that it wasn't an OBVIOUS take on The Little Mermaid. I got so sucked into Elyse's
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Sarah Ockler is the bestselling author of six young adult novels: The Summer of Chasing Mermaids, #scandal, The Book of Broken Hearts, Bittersweet, Fixing Delilah, and Twenty Boy Summer. Her books have been translated into several languages and have received numerous accolades, including ALA's Best Fiction for Young Adults, Girls' Life Top 100 Must Reads, Indie Next List, and nominations for YALSA ...more

Articles featuring this book

Sun-drenched love takes exciting shape in The Summer of Chasing Mermaids. The author answers your questions about her advice for young writers, her...
14 likes · 2 comments
“When one dream burns to ash, you don't crumble beneath it. You get on your hands and knees, and you sift through those ashes until you find the very last ember, the very last spark. Then you breathe. You breathe. You fucking breathe. And you make a new fire.” 68 likes
“Love didn't save me; it changed me. Changed me into someone who could save myself.” 36 likes
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