RELEASED: November 12, 2019
PUBLISHER: Thomas Nelson
GENRE: YA Fantasy, Retelling
GOODREADS RATING: 3.68
TRIGGERS + REP: suicide, suicide attempt, self-harm, suicidal thoughts, peer pressure, emotional abuse, anxiety, depression, PTSD, eating disorders, and unwanted/non-consensual advances, death of a loved one, grief,
There is more than one way to drown.
Coral has always been different, standing out from her mermaid sisters in a society where blending in is key. Worse yet, she fears she has been afflicted with the dreaded Disease, said to be carried by humans—emotions. Can she face the darkness long enough to surface in the light?
Above the sea, Brooke has nothing left to give. Depression and anxiety have left her feeling isolated. Forgotten. The only thing she can rely on is the numbness she finds within the cool and comforting ocean waves. If only she weren’t stuck at Fathoms—a new group therapy home that promises a second chance at life. But what’s the point of living if her soul is destined to bleed?
Merrick may be San Francisco’s golden boy, but he wants nothing more than to escape his controlling father. When his younger sister’s suicide attempt sends Merrick to his breaking point, escape becomes the only option. If he can find their mom, everything will be made right again—right?
When their worlds collide, all three will do whatever it takes to survive, and Coral might even catch a prince in the process. But what—and who—must they leave behind for life to finally begin?
I have postponed on writing this review for a while now. If you’ve heard about Coral already, you might know this book packs a huge emotional punch. Me being where I’m at mentally.. Let’s just say I had to take care of myself while reading, but I also couldn’t stop reading at the same time. Good thing? Bad thing?
Definitely, without any doubt, the best thing. I was lost in Coral’s story, in Brooke’s problems, in Merrick’s life. Not to mention the intriguing side characters. They all moved me, got to me emotionally and I felt so much while reading. That alone makes this book one of my favorites of all time. But not only that.
For it is only in darkness one is forced to seek the light.
The way this story is crafted and put together is truly amazing. Let’s just say the story lines twist and cross and come together and apart in the best, most perfect and intricate ways.
All in all.. it’s simply.. admirable how this author succeeds at waving together three POVs in different time frames. Simply superb. It has a way of making you see connections, or expect connections, that might or might not really be there. All without the author pointing it out herself, which, in turn, immerses you into the story even more. Apart from that, I stand by “this book is more about the feelings, but boy, is it done well!”
When you use your voice, whether through speech or the written word, it has a way of healing.
As for the content of Coral.. Yes, it deals with a ton of things but I never felt like it was too much. All things were handled with so much care. The author even added a letter at the start saying she tried to do justice to people’s experience with mental illness, but it’s still different for everyone. I applauded that even before starting the book and.. while reading I just.. It’s hard to put into words how much this book means to me. [Do note you really have to take care of yourself if you decide to read this book. All the rep / trigger warnings aren’t for nothing, people. They really aren’t.]
Depression is an ilness. It is a disease.
To shed a bit more light on the different characters and their issues, I’ll mention the three main characters. Coral, our mermaid, isn’t supposed to have any feelings but she does. For that, she’s pretty much an outcast. Merrick, on the other hand, struggles with a mentally abusive father and his sister’s suicide attempt and self-harm. Last, but definitely not least, we have Brook who’s battling depression, has anxiety and feels like there is no way to get better. Throughout the story we follow each and single one of them – which makes one hell of a ride.
You are not nothing. No matter what anyone says. Okay? You are not nothing.
The atmosphere of this story.. It’s influenced a huge deal by everything going on, but also by the author’s choice to not name certain side characters. This adds a very.. distinct vibe since you keep guessing as to who those characters are exactly.
I can’t people right now.
I don’t know. Is there more I can tell you to convince you? If there is, let me know, and I’ll happily make sure you get yourself a copy! After all, I’m getting myself a physical copy as well.
So.. Is there anything I have to add so you buy yourself a copy stat?
Do you like reading books with an emotional impact such as this one?
What’s another book you think would have the same effect on my person?