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Speak the Ocean

4.24  ·  Rating details ·  173 ratings  ·  72 reviews
For Mer handler Finn Jarvis, the feral mermaid performers at Oceanica Marine Park are nothing more than ruthless aquatic predators, violent and unpredictable. That doesn’t stop the public from flocking to one of the world’s most popular tourist attractions. To them, the Mer are magical entertainment, too beautiful to be dangerous. They don’t see what happens to the ones wh ...more
ebook, 372 pages
Published July 9th 2019 by Reuts
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Rebecca There's a romance between the trainers, with some sex scenes that don't fade to black.…moreThere's a romance between the trainers, with some sex scenes that don't fade to black.(less)
Rebecca That would be wonderful Ali! I won't have ARCs until this summer, but I would love to send you one for review when I have them. I'll let you know when…moreThat would be wonderful Ali! I won't have ARCs until this summer, but I would love to send you one for review when I have them. I'll let you know when they're ready :)(less)

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Average rating 4.24  · 
Rating details
 ·  173 ratings  ·  72 reviews

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May 29, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)
Shelves: favorites
I wrote the book, so obviously I'm giving it five stars ;)

Go weird little book, go! I hope you all love it!
Michael Mammay
Jun 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing
The voice in this book jumps off the page. Even before you know what's going on, it hooks you and draws you into the story. Just exceptionally well written.

And the story is great, too. The book is told from two points of view in alternating chapters. Finn is a trainer at a marine park that resembles something like Sea World. Erie is a mermaid who is captured in the open ocean and taken against her will to be an attraction in that park. Finn becomes her trainer, and he quickly realizes that she'
♛ Garima ♛
3 stars


Some aspect of animal cruelty

Short review:
This was 5 star read up until the last chapter. In my later night read haze, I finished this book, so it is safe to say that it certainly possesses the quality that keeps you up until 2 AM, however I also left confused whether I have read what I have read last night? Apparently, I did and somehow it didn't leave a good taste. It's like eating something rancid after eating an exquisite eight-course fine meal.

We live
Alyson Grauer
Jul 25, 2019 rated it it was amazing
SPEAK THE OCEAN is an incredible debut, filled with vibrant character, breathtaking stakes and a highly realistic take on what it would inevitably be like if mermaids were captured and used in a theme park. The morality of marine life in captivity for human amusement is key to the heart of this story, and it pulls sharply on the heartstrings of any reader, especially those who have a soft spot for marine life and ocean conservation. In addition to believable depictions of marine science and the ...more
Aug 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This book was nearly 400 pages long. I finished last night. Unlike most novels, I took my time reading it. I savored the story because I didn't want to leave this world once immersed. Terrible pun, but I couldn't resist. It's also true.

You can read the book blurb and other reviews to get the plot. I want to convey the heart without giving away too much.

We have a protagonist, a guy, who's full of himself. He's cocky and confident and complex. That's the important part, his complexity. Without it,
Jul 10, 2019 rated it did not like it
This started out so good but then never went anywhere. I'm not sure what this book wants to be.

It is pitched as Blackfish meets The Little Mermaid and has the potential to explore corporate greed and human entitlement with the backdrop of a mermaid amusement park. But all of that is kind of brushed over and never really explored. Instead we get repetitive scenes of trainer Finn and mermaid Erie having shallow conversations and interactions. I wish we would have seen more of the other trainers a
Danni The Girl
Jul 04, 2020 rated it really liked it
"If he ever jumps into my tank again, I will steal his air, because he stole my ocean."

Finn helped create Oceania with Aunt D, who worked with his dad, who sadly died trying to provide the evidence that the Mer people exist.

Finn is just waiting for his opportunity to become a trainer, and now is his chance.

A really interesting and engaging story of love, courage and bravery.

I really loved this story, and I really loved the ending of this story too. I did find the writing very cringe worthy a
Drema Deoraich
Aug 25, 2019 rated it it was amazing
First, humans discovered the Mer were real. Second, humans learned that Mer performances drew thousands of paying tourists to marine parks every day. Third, humans discovered that the Mer are not like Ariel. They’re lethal predators who can—and do—kill their human trainers. Only rigid rules, constant vigilance, and an electroshocker keep them in line.

Finn, a human handler, wants only to prove his value and make a name for himself in this business. Erie, the first Mer put in Finn’s hands for tra
May 31, 2019 marked it as to-read
Shelves: guest
Author's guest post at my blog:
Juliana Brandt
Jun 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Full disclosure: I was read Speak the Ocean in draft-form and have also read it in this final-form.

Speak the Ocean is one of the most original, creative concepts I've recently read and one that very nearly destroyed my heart. Rebecca Enzor's passion for science, for the ocean and it's inhabitants, and for storytelling shine through in this book. The inventiveness with which Enzor built this world--one where humans have hunted and trapped mermaids to train them for entertainment purposes--is phen
Hayley Stone
Jul 09, 2019 rated it really liked it
Speak the Ocean is a compelling novel that deals with the question of who we see as worthy of humanity, compassion, and empathy, and why.

I've seen it described as Blackfish meets The Little Mermaid and that's not far off the mark. Erie's story is heartfelt, at moments tragic, while still managing to have great moments of pathos, and remain constantly entertaining. I've never seen a mermaid story done quite this way before, based largely in science, and I loved that aspect of the book. I had my
Jun 27, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is an urban fantasy novel in which humans have discovered the existence of mermaids —they refer to them as mer or merfolk regardless of their gender— and have the brilliant idea of capturing them to create a show in an amusement park. We humans are always so altruistic and kind. People believe that mers have no language and behave like wild animals, because those who found them for the first time decided to include them in the category of fish; they are just another type of animal to take a ...more
Oct 31, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
Finn is a young student who was interested in the ocean all his life. He’s working at Oceanica, the place that is training mermaids to perform and entertain the audience. For many years he was waiting for the day when he will become a trainer. His dream came true when they brought new mer to train. However, it wasn’t just some other mermaid. She looked exactly like the first mer that was discovered by his father. He decided to train her in his own way, without shocking her with the loop as most ...more
Aug 25, 2020 rated it really liked it
Many thanks to REUTS Publications and NetGalley for the ARC! This book was published on July 9 and is now available for purchase.

Speak the Ocean is a new adult contemporary fantasy that uses aspects of “The Little Mermaid” while still distinctly being it’s own story. After discovery mermaids, or the Mer, humans immediately built Oceanica, a Sea World-like park that captures and trains Mer to perform. Finn Jarvis, a Mer handler at the park, has always believed that the Mer are mindless predators
Kaija Rayne
Jul 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I enjoyed this book quite a bit, it takes an old favorite of mine, jumbles it up and tosses the dice out to retell it in a whole new way.

One of my favorite characters, Niku, is a dolphin, but he’s not anything like Flipper. He’s more like Cujo, and he’s definitely no Flounder. I’d dare anyone to read this just to see what they thought about Niku, simply because I know it’s a more accurate representation of dolphins than Flipper ever was.

Erie, one of the two main characters, is a mermaid more lik
A. S.
Jul 17, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-in-2019
SPEAK THE OCEAN had me immediately at a disadvantage because it takes place in Key West, revolves around the ocean, and has boats in it. Oh, and also mermaids. These are a few of my favorite things (yes, to be sung to the tune of the song from "The Sound of Music").

Between that and the synopsis (keeping mermaids in an aquarium?!) I knew I was going to enjoy the novel. I did not expect to like it as much as I did.

While mermaids can be cheesy and hard to pull off in adult fiction (I've read a few
Jul 10, 2019 rated it really liked it
I love the twists in this novel. Like Niku, one of my favorite characters. He's nothing like what we view consider dolphins to be. He also has so much character. Erie was great, too. I love how the Mer weren't bad but they weren't good either. They just were. And it was the individual Mer who could act up or not, and that they could be dangerous just like a human or animal or plant can be dangerous even though it's beautiful.

The message of the book definitely speaks to that of Black Fin and see
Nikki (Dark.Side.of.the.Tome)
As someone who lives close to Sea World, this book hit home with me. I struggle with wanting to go see the aquatic life and feeling like it is inhumane. This book does an awesome job toeing that line.

This book was well written and makes you think and feel for everyone involved. It's like Free Willy meets The Little Mermaid. Enjoyable and heartbreaking all at once.

I think my one complaint is the romance. While I enjoyed seeing things progress and the relationship between characters grow, I always
Whitney Schneider
Jun 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I won an ARC of this book from the author.

As a kid, I dreamed of working at Sea World, and I was obsessed with mermaids! So, as soon as I read the description for this book, I knew I had to read it! What an original concept. I really enjoyed getting to know Finn and Erie. Rebecca Enzor does a great job of making the reader feel such sympathy for Erie, while at the same time, allowing them to understand where Finn is coming from and the difficult position he’s in once he starts realizing Erie is
Sam Seaman
Jul 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Speak the Ocean is an excellent read. The characters are vibrant and well-developed; Finn wasn't my cup of tea but he was mostly admirable and Erie is a sweetheart I was cheering for the whole way through.

The plot was well-paced and even though I knew what was coming I still didn't want to put it down (read through the whole thing in one sitting! :). The glimpses of Mer society are tantalizing and I am hoping for a sequel because I have so many Questions, which is a good thing for me!
Jul 11, 2019 rated it really liked it
This was a lot of fun. It is grim grim grim! Things are grim and then they get really grim before they get better. But they do get better.

There's enough world-building here to support a sequel and I'd definitely read one if it ever popped up on my radar, and I'll be sure to check out anything else from Enzor in the future.
Jun 14, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I learned about this incredible author over a year ago when I got hooked on her short story and her voice in "Putting the Science in Fiction." I can't wait to read Speak the Ocean because it will open the gateway to making Mer the next big thing in the sci-fi world. ...more
Diana Beebe
Jul 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Loved it!

Erie and Finn just want to live their best lives in their own worlds. I was lucky enough to read the very first draft, and it’s even better now. Such a great story!
Dan Rowinski
Jan 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing
There's blood in the water. Enzor's terrific debut doesn't play nice with your concept of friendly Mer people who want to be part of this world. An emotional and sometimes vicious story that will leave you guessing until the end, I heartily recommend. ...more
Shaelene (aGirlWithBookss)
The mood struck for me to read a mermaid book, and seeing as I had a free 30-day subscription for scribed I decided to go with this book as it sounded very interesting.

We follow two perspectives- Finn, a human who works at his ‘aunts’ company. Finn’s father discovered the Mer, no one believed him and he went missing looking for them. Finn’s ‘aunt’ discovered the Mer and with Finn’s idea created a marine park to teach the mermaids tricks to perform for a human audience. The Mer is very dangerous,
Oct 29, 2020 rated it really liked it
Finn is a young student who was interested in the ocean all his life. He’s working at Oceanica, the place that is training mermaids to perform and entertain the audience. For many years he was waiting for the day when he will become a trainer. His dream came true when they brought new mer to train. However, it wasn’t just some other mermaid. She looked exactly like the first mer that was discovered by his father. He decided to train her in his own way, without shocking her with the loop as most ...more
Sep 21, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I don't even know where to start with this retelling. The Little Mermaid was my absolute favorite when I was a child, so reading this was fun. I
really didn't want to finish the book because I enjoyed it so much. I loved the multiple twists, how well the book was written and the interaction between all the characters. Side note, this is told in dual-POV for each chapter. I liked being able to get the perspective of the Mer as well as humans.

Speak the Ocean contains political, familial, relations
Oct 26, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This was a novel I thoroughly enjoyed. The characters were fleshed out and well written, the plot moved at a good pace, and it had raw emotion that really spoke to me. I loved how the characters weren't overly good or evil, but actually act and come across as real people. I loved Finn's growth throughout the novel, even though he was definitely not my favorite character in the book. That goes to Niku:) All in all, it was a great story with moving moments, real emotion, and authentic characters. ...more
Aug 18, 2020 rated it really liked it
I received a copy of this novel from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Speak the Ocean is a dual-POV novel told from the perspectives of a mermaid captured and forced into performing at a marine park and her trainer, the son of the man who first discovered the existence of mermaids. It is a delightful and poignant take on animal captivity for human amusement, especially marine parks that showcase orcas/dolphins. Making the animals more humanoid was a genius way to make people feel more
Sarah Wright
Feb 21, 2020 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: fans of Into the Drowning Deep by Mira Grant
3.5/5 stars — a gritty plot offset by glimpses of love and levity

Speak the Ocean is a mermaid story for the adult set, billed as “Blackfish meets The Little Mermaid,” but I think it’s closer to “Blackfish meets Beauty and the Beast plus mermaids.” Obviously that’s not as catchy, but it describes the plot better, in my opinion, particularly an eventual Stockholm syndrome-esque dynamic between main-character narrators Finn and Erie.

In Speak the Ocean, mermaid handler Finn has to weigh his dream of
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Rebecca Enzor is an analytical chemist in Charleston, SC, where she lives with her husband, two dogs, three cats, and sometimes chickens. Her articles on writing science in science fiction can be found in the upcoming “Putting the Science in Fiction” anthology, out October 16th from Writer’s Digest Books. Obsessed with everything ocean, she studied fisheries biology in college and electrocuted her ...more

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