Author: Suzanne Kamata
Publisher: Wyatt-MacKenzie Publishing
Date of publication: February 2017
Elise Faulkner is more at home in the waters of her beloved Lake Michigan than on land where her beauty queen mom is always on her back about her lack of a social life; her sister is dating the boy of her dreams; her favorite penpal–the one who wrote about mermaids in Ghana–has gotten married and ended their correspondence; and no one’s allowed to talk about her glamorous great-grandmother, the deep-sea wreck diver. Elise is biding her time with books until she can flee. But then crazy Chiara Hanover pops into her life, as does Miguel, a mysterious carnival worker whose dark future has been predicted by a gypsy.
I did enjoy the parts about Elise's childhood and her interactions with her mother. Those kept my interest and had the story been more about her and her mother, I might have liked it more. I never really felt like I connected with any of the characters. Elise was initially a bookworm and reminded me of myself at her age. She was content to read all day and not talk to anyone. As the story progressed, the similarities stopped there. I couldn't reconcile the bookworm and straight A student with the girl who all of a sudden makes really bad decisions. That is where the story fell apart for me. I never saw any growth in Elise even in the end. Everything seemed to fall too much into place for her and there were too many coincidences to be believable. Even the "consequences" she gets for her bad decisions are just too easy. The ending was really quick and left me with questions about Miguel and what came next.
In the end, I'm not sure this was for me. I didn't find the "coming of age story" that I was hoping to get. It has received a lot of good reviews from others on the tour, so make sure to check them out. The writing is good, it's just the story I didn't care for. Give it a shot and try it for yourself.
About the author:
Suzanne Kamata was born and raised in Grand Haven, Michigan. She is most recently from Lexington, South Carolina, and now lives in Tokushima Prefecture, Japan with her husband and two children. Her short stories, essays, articles and book reviews have appeared in over 100 publications including Real Simple, Brain, Child, Crab Orchard Review, and The Japan Times. Her work has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize five times, and received a Special Mention in 2006. She is also a two-time winner of the All Nippon Airways/ Wingspan Fiction Contest, winner of the Paris Book Festival Award, and winner of the Half the World Global Literati Award for the novel.
Connect with Suzanne
Suzanne Kamata’s TLC Book Tours TOUR STOPS:
Tuesday, February 14th: Kahakai Kitchen
Wednesday, February 15th: Books and Bindings
Thursday, February 16th: Bibliotica
Friday, February 17th: Books ‘n Tea
Tuesday, February 21st: Write Read Life
Wednesday, February 22nd: Reading is My Superpower
Wednesday, February 22nd: Just Commonly
Thursday, February 23rd: Ms. Nose in a Book
Friday, February 24th: Readaholic Zone
Monday, February 27th: Bewitched Bookworms
Tuesday, February 28th: Books a la Mode – author guest post
Wednesday, March 1st: From the TBR Pile
Thursday, March 2nd: Sweet Southern Home
Friday, March 3rd: Thoughts on This ‘n That
Monday, March 6th: No More Grumpy Bookseller
Tuesday, March 7th: Dreams, Etc.
Thursday, March 9th: Art @ Home
Monday, March 13th: Wall-to-Wall Books
Wednesday, March 15th: Dreaming Big
Monday, March 20th: Patricia’s Wisdom