Author: Laura Kirkpatrick
Publisher: Egmont Publishing
Publication Date: 30th May 2020
About The Book…
Molly Seabrook’s dull seaside life is turned upside down when she turns 13 and is let in on the family secret: she’s PART-MERMAID! While this does explain why her bonkers Mum is always skinny-dipping, Molly isn’t exactly thrilled. She already has to dress as a haddock to promote the family fish ’n’ chip shop, and now this? Growing up is hard enough without sprouting a fish tail in Double Maths, or disguising your gills from the cute boy at the ice cream kiosk.
Join Molly as she navigates the stormy sea of social awkwardness, best friend fallouts and the World’s Most Embarrassing Family – all while attempting to hide her (Very Weird) new double identity. Will she sink or swim? You’ll have to wait and SEA . . .
The first in a hilarious new series about family, friendship and one BIG fishy secret.
What I Thought…
What is this I hear you ask, a review?! On SWB? Yes, it’s been a little while hasn’t it! My bad, but I’m back with a review for a cracker of a story! It’s been a strange few weeks but at the end of March I took a trip to Little Marmouth and dived into Molly’s world. Yes, I know, once again very late to this party, but let me tell you it was just what I needed!
If any of you are YA readers you may be more familiar with Laura, as Laura Steven, author of the Izzy O’Neill books and The Love Hypothesis. And Then I Turned Into A Mermaid is her first foray into middle grade writing and as a fan of her YA work I was definitely not disappointed with this.
Let’s start with the plot, Molly Seabrook is a fairly average 13 year old girl, she’s dealing with crushes, wanting to be in with the popular kids and dealing with her embarrassing mother (who admittedly may be a little more embarrassing than your average parent due to her habit of skinny dipping at lunchtime). But shortly after her 13 birthday she discovers a secret, she along with her mother and older sisters are mermaids, and once she goes through that first change just being near a body of water is enough to trigger another one. Suddenly Molly must deal with the practicalities of being a mermaid alongside all the trials and tribulations of being a regular teenager! The first few chapters are spent introducing the characters, and while totally necessary I found it a little slow going and so it took me a little while to get into it, but once I got to know Molly and some of the supporting characters I was totally invested and needed to see what happened both with her family and also her school friends. I’m looking forward to catching up with them all again!
A little about the characters, Molly Seabrook is our central character, she lives in an old lighthouse with her mother and 4 sisters. She turns 13 right at the beginning of the book and there’s a lot of things I recognised from my own childhood in Molly’s story. The longing to fit in with all the popular kids and some of the arguments and fallings out that makes you feel like the world as you know it has ended. I think she’s such a relatable character for an awful lot of young readers, and I’m intrigued to see what comes next for her.
Molly has four sisters, three older, Myla, Margot and Melissa; and one younger sister Minnie. Each sister is very different, from the bookish and smart Myla, to the practical joker Margot, the prim and proper Melissa and the wonderful, slightly eccentric five-year-old Minnie. I don’t have any sisters myself, so it was interesting to see their sibling bond, and the way it changed throughout the book. The eldest Myla is 17 in this story and looking to go off to university, so I’m intrigued to see how the dynamic changes over the course of future books.
Just briefly I’m going to mention a couple of Molly’s school friends as I don’t want to give away too much about the plot. Ada, is Molly’s best friend at school, and I have such mixed feelings about her throughout the course of the book. I think Laura portrays such a realistic relationship between the two girls, some of the events across the course of the book are definitely things I recognise from my own school days! There are a lot of other characters Molly interacts with at school but finally I’m going to give a quick shout out to Eddie, who seems to be the most genuine sweetest guy! I hope he features in future books and stays the nice guy that he is!
It took me a few chapters to really get stuck in but once I did I fell in love with Molly, I think some of the issues she deals with, especially in her relationship with her best friend will really resonate with a lot of middle grade (and older) readers. I can’t wait to see what’s next for the sisters!
About The Author…
Laura Kirkpatrick also writes young adult fiction as Laura Steven. She is an author, journalist and screenwriter from the northernmost town in England. The Exact Opposite of Okay, her YA debut, was published by Egmont in March 2018.
As well as mentoring aspiring authors through schemes like Pitch Wars, Laura works for Mslexia, a non-profit organisation supporting women writers. She graduated with Distinction from her MA in Creative Writing in 2017, and her TV pilot Clickbait – a mockumentary about journalists at a viral news agency – was a finalist in British Comedy’s 2016 Sitcom Mission.
Connect With Laura
Want To Buy It?
As always if you’ve read the book let me know what you thought! If you’ve not read it yet will my review convince you to pick it up?