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Maybe a Mermaid

4.05  ·  Rating details ·  82 ratings  ·  38 reviews
Eleven-year-old Anthoni Gillis is not the kind of kid who believes in fairies, unicorns, or even the word “maybe.” She’s more of a comic-books girl. So when her mom brings her to Thunder Lake for a summer at the Showboat Resort, she doesn’t believe the local rumors about the Boulay Mermaid.

Anthoni has bigger fish to fry. She’s always wanted a True Blue Friend. But it’s bee
Hardcover, 288 pages
Published March 26th 2019 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux (Byr)
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4.05  · 
Rating details
 ·  82 ratings  ·  38 reviews

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Mar 06, 2019 rated it really liked it
I received this via goodreads giveaways in exchange for an honest review. All my opinions are my own. ,

This was an offbeat and quirky book (Where were all these books when I was in elementary school?) that had me smiling through the whole thing.

Its a fun story about Anthoni and her mom, both trying to find their way. Anthoni is looking for a True Blue friend and take care of her mom... her mom is doing the best she can to provide for her daughter and make ends meet.
(Bad grammar there? Yup,
Have you ever had a good thing right in front of your face and you didn't realize it? Anthoni Gillis is in this exact situation. She has a plan to get a True Blue Friend, one that will always be with you through thick and thin, but so far in her eleven year old life, she has not found one. Her mom sells Beauty & Bee cosmetics and she is working her way up the company; however because of her success they have always moved around and Anthoni has never been able to make a true blue friend. When ...more
Katie Reilley
Nov 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Thank you to the author and publisher for sharing an early copy with our #bookexpedition group!

A sweet story of friendship that middle grade readers will enjoy, Maybe a Mermaid follows 11 year old Anthoni who is looking for a True Blue Friend. Anthoni and her mom have just returned to the lakeside resort where her mom spent her summers, though its run down appearance looks nothing like her mom remembers. Readers will cheer for Anthoni as she faces challenges in finding that True Blue Friend and
Michele Knott
I absolutely loved this debut from author Josephine Cameron. A story that readers will love and with a main character, Anthoni, who is searching for her True Blue Friend in difficult circumstances. Although the reader can see what she is searching for is right in front of her, we take the journey with Anthoni and cheer her on the whole way. Featuring a dash of magical realism, it’s the belief of what could be that keeps us all going.
Ms. Yingling
Jan 19, 2019 rated it liked it
E ARC from Edelweiss Plus

Anthoni Gillis and her mother have moved frequently as her mother moves up in the ranks of Beauty and the Bee cosmetics. When her mother moves up a level, she takes Anthoni on a long-promised vacation to Showboat Resort at Thunder Lake, a place she spent six "perfect" summers at when she was a girl. When the two arrive, the whole place is in disrepair and is being run by Charlotte Boulay, the now elderly daughter of the owners. Anthoni's mother reconnects with her childh
Mar 17, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This debut middle grade novel lives up to its cover and will be a delightful summer discovery for readers. You can't help but root for Anthonie and the quirky cast of characters she meets at the Showboat Resort. Maureen Boulay alone is worth the price of admission. Readers will learn along with Anthonie lessons about friendship, loyalty and looking below the surface for the truth. Highly recommended!

Thank you to Macmillan and NetGalley for a digital ARC of this book in exchange for an honest rev
Mar 18, 2019 rated it it was ok
Competently written but lacks diversity in a way that feels deeply out of touch with the rest of publishing. I mean the only two people of color are announced first by their race, then their special talent (tap dancing), then by name - and at that they are thanking white folx for giving them a job.

Additionally there are some comments on the body of an older woman that didn't sit right with me.

Which is a shame because the pacing and emotional arcs of the characters are good, but it feels like i
Katlyn Duncan
Apr 01, 2019 rated it really liked it
MAYBE A MERMAID, by Josephine Cameron, was a sweet little adventure story about finding a True Blue Friend, and creating a summer to remember. I loved the constant references in Anthoni and her mom's life relating to the direct sales business. This book grabbed my attention, and I really felt everything Anthoni went through. I would highly recommend this book to anyone looking for an escape from reality for a little while.
Apr 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing
How is this a first time author’s work? Oh my goodness. What a lovely book. Relatable and quirky characters, a summer setting, and enough humor for two books. Please tell all your ES kids to read this one. Order it for your libraries. It’s that good!
Mar 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing
So great! I want to read it again.
Mar 13, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: arc-received
In this poignant story of a girl searching for her True Blue Friend, Josephine Cameron's Maybe a Mermaid touches the heart and reminds readers what real friendship is all about. The pre-teen years are hard, and making friends can be torturous. Through her writing and characters, Cameron shows us that your friends are not always who you expect.

Anthoni and her mom always have a plan and the number one rule is to "Stick to the Plan". It's worked so far, so when her mom drags Anthoni to The Showboat
Dec 01, 2018 rated it really liked it
I received an advance copy of this book from the publisher on Netgalley.

I completely fell in love with this cover - it is AMAZING and I love it.

The text within is also really good. I loved all the characters and the story. It struck a good note between plot and character development across the board. It was funny and sweet and written at, what I think, is a great level for middle grade readers who want something a little fun, a little serious, and easy to read.

You can read the official plot but
Dec 31, 2018 rated it really liked it
That this is Cameron’s debut novel is a delight, because it is a seriously strong first offering. She’ll be one to watch.

Eleven-year-old Anthoni Gillis grew up hearing her mother Carrie’s memories of Thunder Lake and the Showboat Resort. It was a magical place that Anthoni was eager to experience herself. The Showboat Resort is not magical in that it promises fairies or mermaids, or even X-Men-level mutants; it was a place where True Blue Friends were found and made.

As a sales rep and team leade
Mar 25, 2019 rated it really liked it
Anthoni and her mom move around a lot. Her mother sells makeup at house parties (think Avon) and while things had been going well for a long time, recently sales have seriously dropped off, and they're unexpectedly in more difficult financial straits. Her mom had put down a substantial nonrefundable deposit at a fancy lake resort in the town where she'd grown up, for Anthoni to have that fun experience for the summer, but in the end, she gives up their apartment and they both go to the resort fo ...more
Apr 20, 2019 rated it liked it
I had the opportunity to read a NetGalley digital ARC of this middle grade novel in exchange for a review. This book tells the story of Anthoni Gillis, an eleven-year-old girl who has no True Blue Friends. Her mother moves from town to town trying to rise up the ladder of success selling Beauty and the Bee cosmetics. Hoping to sell more of her products, her mother takes Anthoni to the Showboat Resort for the summer. As Anthoni tries to make a True Blue Friend, determine if there’s truth to the l ...more
After a wobbly start, I couldn't put this book down. The voice is incredibly genuine--it feels like it's narrated by an eleven year old girl. This is a great look at family: narrator Anthoni and her mom are close and supportive, and while they experience bumps along the way, they're always there for each other.

The book has the "magic of summer" vibe, complete with Fourth of July celebrations and swimming in the local lake. It also has some genuinely funny moments that made me laugh out loud. Mos
Feb 08, 2019 rated it liked it
thank you to the publisher for the review copy. All opinions are my own.

MAYBE A MERMAID transported me back to summer camp in Northern WI.

Anthoni and her mother spend a summer at her mother’s favorite childhood resort. They arrive to find it in decrepit condition and run by a strange and mysterious ex-Vaudeville star. Anthoni spends the summer trying to make a True Blue Friend, but she also finds herself drawn to investigate rumors that a mermaid once lived at the resort. The two goals converg
Debbie Tanner
I really liked this story about Anthoni who's been moving around a lot to help support her mom's career in sales (Honey Bee beautiful products). They've been promising themselves to spend the summer at the resort where her mom summered when she was growing up. Except that things are not quite what they seem. The resort is run down and they appear to be the only guests. The friends they were hoping to reconnect with don't seem to have their best interests at heart (or do they?) and the new people ...more
Mar 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
The whole time I was reading this beautiful story I felt my heart being tugged back to my childhood! Summers taking swim lessons and seeing those friends on cape cod I knew for two and a half months a year. Cameron’s cast of characters are so multi dimensional that you feel like you could have a conversation with each one. I loved meeting Anthony, Charlotte and DJ and following along as this unlikely friendship sparks the hope we all need.
Feb 20, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I LOVED this book. I had to say that first. I got this book as an ARC through Netgalley in exchange for an honest Review. It's not so much a mermaid book. but that is alright. I liked the characters and description. It felt like it could be anytime. Because how kids develop friendships doesn't really change. And their need for a connection. It reminded me a bit of Joan Bauer's books like "Hope Was Here" (She was just a random book I picked off the shelf to build up my readers advisory muscles. Y ...more
Mar 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I read this as a read aloud with my fourth graders and they LOVED it. In a recent conversation about favorite book characters, several said that Anthoni is one of their favorites from this year. Josephine Cameron has crafted a novel that speaks to kids (and grown ups!) through humor, emotion, and a touch of mystery/suspense while dealing with what is at the roots of true (blue) friendship.
Dec 31, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: arc, 2018, children-s
A sweet slice-of-life novel about the people in our lives: who we think they are, who we wish they were, and who they actually are. If you want some MLMs, true blue friends, a mermaid (maybe), a mother-daughter bond, a Wolverine-loving girl, and lots of swimming and mosquitoes and nostalgic summer and bonds we create - it's all here! Thanks to Macmillan for a copy :)

Apr 14, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: young-readers
Charlotte Boulay is my favorite character in recent memory, middle grade or otherwise! (I kept picturing Shirley MacLaine in the movie version.) But I loved this whole book, from the imaginative Beauty and the Bee sales to the wacky, dilapidated Showboat resort, and the mystery and surprising friendships at the heart of it all. A perfect middle grade summer romp, with real depth.
Debbi Florence
Mar 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing
No maybes about it, MAYBE A MERMAID makes a big splash in this debut MG novel. A story about True Blue Friends, it will make you laugh, cry, and brim joy. I look forward to reading many more books by this author!
Alison Hadley
Apr 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Delightful reading. Magical and fun for all Mermaid lovers!
Mar 05, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: children, friendship
I like that there are both positive and negative aspects to the characters. Sometimes in surprising ways.
Dec 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Fun read!
Jan 05, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2019
I enjoyed this quick read more and more as the story progressed. The character building is great and the ending is very satisfying. I look forward to reading more from Cameron.
Erin Varley
Dec 02, 2018 rated it really liked it
A heartwarming book about what real friendship means. A lake, a meow, a beemobile, and of course a mermaid all add to the uniqueness of this story.
John Cusick
rated it it was amazing
Oct 25, 2016
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