Book Review: Sea Change by Aimee Friedman

Sea Change by Aimee Friedman is a YA fantasy novel. It was published in June 2010 by Point and is 320 pages long. Although this hasn’t been published in the UK yet, it is available on Amazon.

Sixteen year old Miranda Merchant was supposed to spend her summer working at an internship in New York. All of that changed when her Grandmother, Isadora, passed away. Miranda has to change all of her plans to join her mother on Selkie Island, Isadora’s home. Miranda is very level headed and responsible so when she steps off the ferry onto an island surrounded by lore and mythical legends, her whole world is upside down.

After deciding to try and at least make the most of her vacation, Miranda is shocked to realise that she feels such a strong connection to Isadora’s home and the island itself. She definitely wasn’t expecting to be interested in what Selkie has to offer, especially rich but handsome T.J. and local but extremely nice Leo. The problem is, she doesn’t know which boy would be right for her and which is keeping the biggest secret. Selkie’s history just seems to keep following Miranda around, no matter how hard she tries to avoid it.

What I thought
I have to admit that I only added this book to my wish list quite a while ago due to the cover. I love beautiful book covers and this one looked so enchanting. With its pearly blue colour and beautiful boy and girl, the cover instantly drew me in and made me want the book, no matter what it was about.

Miranda was a great protagonist and as the story is told from her POV, I got to find out a lot about her. At the beginning, she knew what she wanted out of life and knew that she was never going to be one of the beautiful, popular girls. Although she was a bit neurotic at times, I did like her, mostly because she was down to earth a lot of the time. It was interesting to see Miranda change once she arrived on Selkie Island, even if the transition was a little too quick for my liking. Maybe that was just some of the magic of the island showing through though. For a girl that recently suffered from some boy trouble, Miranda was incredibly quick to trust the boys on the island. If that had been me, there is no way I would have rushed into anything with anyone, no matter how nice they seemed.

Leo was so fascinating. As soon as Miranda saw him on the beach, I knew I was going to fall in love with him. It was clear that he wasn’t like the other boys on the island, the ones that summered there and that instantly drew me to him. I think he would have come close to being perfect for me. He was sweet and caring but also mysterious and cheeky with a added hint of bad boy thrown in for good measure. Although deep down I think I really knew that he was a nice guy, I couldn’t help but hope he was a lot more naughty than he seemed. There was so much mystery surrounding Leo and his family and I couldn’t wait to find out more about him.

Considering I thought that this book was about merfolk, there wasn’t really an awful lot about them included, apart from some legends that Miranda gets to read about. I wanted to know who, if anyone, was a mermaid/man but I never got to know. One of the things that I thought was going to be exciting about this book was that Miranda would fall in love with a merman or that she would be a mermaid herself. I guess the author did leave a lot of that up to the readers imagination but I would have liked a bit more fact in it all. As I was reading, I kept thinking that the merfolk parts were coming up but they never did so this was quite disappointing at times.

Along with the lore of merfolk, Sea Change also had a lot of history. I loved this aspect of the book as I really enjoy knowing a background of a place or person and here, I got to know both. Isadora was a complete mystery to begin with and although her story wasn’t the main aspect of the book, her own story came through nicely, which explained a lot about Miranda and her mother. History didn’t just focus on the Merchant family though and I liked that other inhabitants of the island were also included. Knowing all of these little things helped to wrap up some of the story nicely and tie everything together.

My biggest problem with this book was that it was so short and there is no sequel in sight. I felt like there was no real closure for a lot of the characters and no definite answers to many things. I really wanted to know what happens next with Miranda and Leo but for now, it seems like it is going to remain a mystery forever. Other than that though, Sea Change is a wonderful read full of romance and fantasy.


  1. I was disappointed that there was nothing Merfolk about this book at all. And the ending left me very unsatisfied!

  2. If I could be on Selkie Island I would never want summer to end. What a history of sea creatures, heirs and southern hospitality this island has. Magnificent.


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