by Tricia Rayburn
pub: July 13, 2010/EgmontTeen Fiction
Something deadly waits beneath the waves off Winter Harbor, and this summer, no one is safe.
Vacationing in Winter Harbor, Maine, is a tradition for Vanessa and Justine Sands, and that means spending time with the Carmichael boys. This summer, Vanessa is determined to channel some of her older sister’s boldness, get over her fear of the ocean, and maybe turn her friendship with Simon Carmichael into something much more.
But when Justine goes cliff-diving after a big family argument, and her body washes ashore the next day, Vanessa is sure that it was more than an accident. She is more certain of this, when she discovers that her sister was keeping some big secrets and Caleb Carmichael’s gone missing. Suddenly, the entire oceanfront town is abuzz when a series of grim, water-related accidents occur, with the male victims washed ashore grinning from ear to ear.
Vanessa and Simon team up to figure out if these creepy depths have anything to do with Justine and Caleb. But will what Vanessa discovers mean the end of her summer romance, or ever life as she knows it?
SIREN is as irresistible as the mythical creature's song.
Mystery and romance melded with paranormal...I was captivated! - Constantly trying to guess what would happen next and hanging on the edge of my seat!
Justine is the adventurous, confident sister, while Vanessa (Nessa) is the quiet, cautious one. I found Nessa easy to relate to and sympathetic as she struggles with her fears. Another plus? Nessa is SMART. Sure she does the occasional "Oh-my-God-what-was-she-thinking?!" stunt (because she's human), but it's rare. And when she needs to, she belts out the brave!
Not ready to accept the answers about Justine’s “suicide,” Nessa goes back to Winter Harbor with one goal: Get answers from the person who knew Justine best - Caleb. Unfortunately, Caleb fell off the radar over a week ago.
Enter Simon. No bad boys here, just helpful, smart (geeky smart that has never seemed so sexy!), protective Simon. They band together and the romance blossoms nicely through their shared adventures.
The mystery surrounding Justine's death, the bodies piling up on shore, and the strange weather rolls together in a well-paced, jam-packed story with jaw dropping twists. My poor brothers...anytime that happened, I’d run around the house going “Omigosh! You are soooooooo not going to believe what just happened!”
My one lowlight with SIREN is the slow start - for me...and if you know me, I love a fast pace from page one. However, the writing is great and it wasn’t snore-fest boring, but my eyebrows didn’t raise with surprise nor my pulse quicken until around page 60-70 and it's absolutely worth the wait for the ball to start rolling because with SIREN, you're in for a special treat.
Sexual Content: There are situations of teen sex but nothing explicit. It's the behind-closed-doors kind of stuff - it's clear it happened but the reader isn't in the room.
The Cover: Looks cool in photos, then becomes totally awesome when you’re holding it in your hands. Her eyes are silver – like silver silver - they reflect! Its eerie and disconcerting...in other words, awesome!
Opening Lines: My sister Justine always believed that the best way to deal with your fear of the dark is to pretend it’s really light.
Not captivating, but like I said, SIREN has a slow start.
Bottom Line: Danger, mystery, romance, charming characters, original premise, character growth, fast-paced (after a slow start) and full of adventure. Satisfying ending but with enough questions that I'm ready for the sequel. I thoroughly enjoyed SIREN - a definite must-read!
FYI: Tricia had kindly offered to provide an interview which you can look forward to on July 30th. In the meantime...