Thursday, April 14, 2011
The Seas by Samantha Hunt
By Samantha Hunt
Completed April 12, 2011
In Samantha Hunt's debut novel, The Seas, we meet a lovely, yet delusional, 19-year-old girl who believes she is a mermaid. Her father told her so, shortly before he walked into the sea and never returned. Clinging to this belief, our narrator takes us on a lyrical ride that shows how tough our world is on mermaids.
A major theme in The Seas is unrequited love. For example, our narrator is in love with Jude, a Gulf War veteran who was 13 years older than her. Jude would hang out with her, protect her at times, but never date her. Jude was emotionally scarred, and he drank heavily and screwed around to hide his issues. The narrator's mom also was caught up in unrequited love. She finally met the man of her dreams, married and bore his child, before he took a walk into the water, Virginia Woolfe-style. The tiny glimpses of their marriage showed us their uneven romance, which lived on long after the dad's disappearance.
The Seas is not your ordinary little book. It's humorous, enchanting, troubling and depressing. While the narrator's delusions of being a mermaid were quaint, at the same time, you wish someone would help her. While you knew Jude was bad news, you hoped he would pay attention to the narrator. This tumbling combination of feelings makes The Seas as quirky and wonderful as its characters.
The best way to make a recommendation would be this: if you liked Little Miss Sunshine, then you will probably like The Seas. Just like the movie, this book won't be for everyone. ( )