The Sea of Tranquility by Katja Millay

The Sea of Tranquility

5 heartwarming stars *****

“I live in a world without magic or miracles. A place where there are no clairvoyants or shapeshifters, no angels or superhuman boys to save you. A place where people die and music disintegrates and things suck.”

Wow... just wow... so much to say I'm having a hard time narrowing it down... I'm gonna' give it my best shot!

The Sea of Tranquility not only surpassed my expectations... it has quickly soared to the top of my all time favorite books that I have ever read! It is beautifully written... and I was pulled into this book emotionally from the first page and stayed that way until the very end.
This is the story of Josh and Nastya... two young people who have unfortunately had their lives defined for them in the wake of their own personal tragedies. Josh has lost everyone he loves and he is alone. Nastya experienced an attack which affected her so badly that she longer speaks. Somehow these two are drawn to each other and as they spend time together they help each other break through their protective barriers and they allow themselves a second chance at life.
There are some amazing supporting characters. I enjoyed so many of them but most especially Drew... Josh's best friend. I didn't know what to think about him in the beginning but I was so pleasantly surprised at how the author turned this character into someone you not only liked but respected. He just made me smile.
This is a book that you need to read slowly... take your time. It is long but never did I feel that it was too wordy and everything was relevant. I found myself wanting to pause every now and then and just reflect. There were so many quotes that led me to think about life a little differently. Here are just a couple of my favorite thought provoking quotes...

“People like to say love is unconditional, but it's not, and even if it was unconditional, it's still never free. There's always an expectation attached. They always want something in return. Like they want you to be happy or whatever and that makes you automatically responsible for their happiness because they won't be happy unless you are ... I just don't want that responsibility.”

"It doesn't matter if you do everything right, if you dress the right way and act the right way and follow all the rules, because evil will find you anyway. Evil's resourceful that way."

Aside from the healing that takes place with Josh and Nastya I was also very touched emotionally by the journey Nastya has in healing wounds with her family. As a mother with daughters I can tell you that the scenes with her mom and dad touched me deeply. My kids are wondering why I'm hugging them today... it's all because of this book!
I'll wrap this up by saying that this is heartwarming not heartbreaking. Well, of course their tragedies are heartbreaking but the healing is heartwarming. So... don't worry about getting attached to your favorite characters... go ahead and attach yourself to them and join them on their emotional journey. This story is all about healing, accepting and finding a way to take a chance on living even when you think it's impossible.

“It’s about the dream of second chances,” he says finally. He hasn’t raised his eyes from the paper on his desk and I feel him looking at me without looking when he uses his grandfather’s words. “The narrator doesn’t respect the beauty of life and the world around her, so it crushes her into the ground and once she’s dead, she realizes everything she took for granted and didn’t see right in front of her while she was alive. She’s begging for another chance to live again so she can appreciate it this time.”
“And does she get that chance?” she asks Josh while I desperately focus on the poster of literary terms on the wall and wait for absolution. When it comes, I barely hear it.
“She does.”

Kleenex... does anyone have a Kleenex???? Just go buy the book... you won't regret it! 

ARC provided by netgalley in exchange for an honest review. 


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