Published: October 25, 2011
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA Children's Books
ARC Received through NETGALLEY
For as long as Esmerine can remember, she has longed to join her older sister, Dosinia, as a siren--the highest calling a mermaid can have. When Dosinia runs away to the mainland, Esmerine is sent to retrieve her. Using magic to transform her tail into legs, she makes her way unsteadily to the capital city. There she comes upon a friend she hasn't seen since childhood--a dashing young man named Alandare, who belongs to a winged race of people. As Esmerine and Alandare band together to search for Dosinia, they rekindle a friendship . . . and ignite the emotions for a love so great, it cannot be bound by sea, land, or air.
Hands down, this has got to be one of the most romantic books I have read in a very long time. There is just something mystical and beautiful in this story that makes you sigh on one page, cry on another, and laugh at one more. In the book, Esmerine (the mermaid) falls in love with Alander (the Fandarsee - or winged creature). Of course, they are a classic love story - as Esmerine can never fully live out of the sea with Alander, and he can never live in the ocean with her.
This story not only captures your imagination by talking about mermaids, it actually makes you believe that mermaids exist. Jaclyn Dolamore does the most fantastic job of writing about the world these mermaids live in - their culture, their fashion, how they eat/drink/live/love - that you would swear she was one in a past lifetime! I honestly believe she could've spent an entire book just focusing on the world of the mermaids, because it had me completely captivated.
But then, in comes the other side of the novel, and that is the world of a Fandarsee. While the author does not go as deep into their culture as she does with the mermaids, you definitely catch glimpses of their way of life here and there. You know that they are wildly intelligent, unappreciated by many, and most important of all - they can fly.
Hence the title, Between the Sea and Sky focuses on these two characters who are caught between the worlds they were born in, and the ones they wish to escape to. They are shunned by most of human society and are normally born and bred to just do or be one thing their entire lives. These traits are also visible in Dolamore's other novel, Magic Under Glass, which I also loved. I think she has this great way of taking these characters and making them absolutely relatable to everyone reading her stories.
Give this book a try. I guarantee that you will love the ending!!
5 out of 5 stars!