I received this book for free from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
A Thousand Salt Kisses by Josie Demuth
Release date: April 29th, 2016
Publisher: Wise Ink Creative
Genres: Young Adult, Romance
Seventeen-year-old Crystal White is the new girl on Starfish Island. Dragged to the remote community by her environmental activist father, she is eager to find fun that doesn’t involve touching fish guts or listening to local folklore.
During a midnight swim with some new friends, Crystal is pulled out to sea by the waves. Convinced she’s going to drown, Crystal is rescued by Llyr, a handsome stranger. As she searches for him in the following weeks, she finds there may be more truth to the Starfish legends than she thought.
Over a sizzling roller-coaster summer, Llyr introduces Crystal to magic she’d only ever dreamed of. But as Crystal comes to love Starfish Island, it begins to drive her family apart. A nearby power plant is devastating local marine life, and her parents are stuck in the middle. As the magic and mundane parts of Crystal’s life converge, she finds herself risking everything to save Llyr, her family, and herself.
Mermen, magic and a forbidden romance? Oh yes please! I was looking for a quick and easy read and totally found it. The only problem? It was a complete disappointment. From the first page it was cliché and predictable and at times totally cringeworthy.
I requested the book off of NetGalley because the blurb sounded interesting and the cover is pretty gorgeous. Unfortunately that’s really all this book had going for it. The lead character, Crystal, is one dimensional. She complains about everything! Even worse? Everything resolves around her, at least she thinks it does. I just couldn’t connect with her at all. The other characters are never really explored, although George’s backstory held some promise and definitely sounded more interesting than the story I was actually reading.
The writing wasn’t my cup of tea. It was abrupt and at times odd sounding. Writing a book from a teenager’s point of view needs to be convincing, either an author can do it or they can’t. Sadly, it just didn’t work. It read like the author was trying to hard to sound “cool” but it ended up reading as immature. Even worse was the fact that female teenagers are basically relegated to only being interested in cute boys, kissing and thinking about sex. Really?!?! UGH!
The insta-love also drove me insane! Llyr, the merman love interest, saves Crystal from drowning and like magic they are madly in love!
“Gosh, he was handsome! He had these thick arched eyebrows and lively sparkling eyes….Underneath his eyes were high cheek bones and then perfect big lips—the type you’d just love to kiss.”
Yup, sweetie, YOU JUST MET HIM! They have one meeting and after that he’s all she can think of. School, family, whatever doesn’t matter, she ends up being all consumed by this “great love”. Yes, she’s a teenager and they don’t always make the best decisions, but there were a lot of things Crystal did to see Llyr that left me shaking my head.
This book was a perfect example of a good idea not being executed very well. Giving it a 2 star rating seems generous, but a 1 or 1.5 just seems terrible. There were a lot of things I didn’t like about this book, but it could just be me. I usually don’t read romances and despise instal-love/attraction/whatever. So, maybe this just wasn’t the book for me. It looks like this is the first in a series, but I will not be picking up the next instalment.