Rogue Wave by Jennifer Donnelly
Genre: Supernatural, Adventure, Romance, Middle-Grade
Published by: Disney Press
Series: Deep Blue (#1)
Where to Find: Goodreads | Amazon
Most importantly, what a beautiful cover.
‘Rogue Wave’ had a lot to prove as the sequel to ‘Deep Blue’, a book that became less impressive as it continued on. ‘Deep Blue’ ended at a very climatic battle, with the six mermaid friends swimming into a mirror in order to escape from the hands of the enemy. I thought we would be instantly thrown back into the action at the beginning of this novel, but was severely disappointed.
The book began with the six mermaids having parted ways (when previously they’d been told they were strongest when together) and only three out of the six mermaids had a prominent role in this story; Sera, Neela and Ling. Becca, Ava and Astrid were hardly mentioned, and since we didn’t really get to know them at all in the first book, I was frustrated that they were still minor characters. Heck, calling them minor characters is an overstatement: they were basically non-existent.
I was especially surprised that the mermaids had split up to go on their quest, because, yes it would be quicker if they went their separate ways, but the blurb promised me an adventure with all six mermaids. There was no way I wasn’t going to be put out at their absence if I was expecting them all to be equally present.
Sera, Neela and Ling (and I assume the other three) are trying to find talismans that link to their Antlantian ancestors in order to defeat the villain of the novels and reclaim their realms. The third person narrator lent itself well to this story, as we were able to focus on both Sera and Neela as they were split up. Overall, I preferred Sera’s part of the story. Although a lot of what happened to her was very convenient (Oh no, I’m going to be attacked by death riders, oh look, there’s a secret safe house! Oh no, this ghost woman is going to kill me, oh look, this diamond is helping my life force! Oh no, my true love is a horrible person, oh look, he loved me all along!) there was a lot more adventure compared to Neela, who spent most of her sections just running away from different threats – and when she did do something adventurous, like defeat a sea dragon, it was only dwelled on for about a page of the novel. Brilliant.
This book was just as pun-y as the last and especially liked the use of transparensea spells (how many transparensea pearls are there? Are they hard to find? If so, the stock must be seriously low) to get out of tricky situations. I definitely think that this book was better than the first as there was a lot more going on, however, it didn’t feel as bitty as the last book. Everything had some sort of purpose, which would later be explained and the ending wasn’t ridiculous.
If this is a trilogy, I think the next book as been well set up, and I look forward to finding out how Becca, Ava and Astrid did on their half of the quest. (A lot of days seemed to pass in this book and I found the time scale quite hard to follow between Sera and Neela, so hopefully that will also be resolved)
My expectations for this series is for it to only get better, as there is a battle coming up, and with the combined powers of the six mermaids, it’s such to be exciting. Overall, I’d give this book three stars, because the book didn’t deliver what was promised on the blurb and the convenience of the story drew away from the action and suspense. Definitely recommended to girls age 10-12!