Elise would much rather spend time indoors with a good book than anything else. It's a proclivity her once beauty queen mother simply can't understand. So when the neighbor's granddaughter moves in, prompting the neighbor to ask Elise to spend time with her, Elise immediately wants to say no. And yet, something prompts her to change her mind.
What she discovers is that the neighbor hopes Elise will be a good influence on Chiara. Instead, it's the other way around. And while Chiara is wild and outgoing, her influence on Elise allows the girl to finally come out of her shell and live.
The Mermaids of Lake Michigan is a character-driven coming of age tale set in the midwest in the 70s.
Elise is a great narrator. One who observes rather big occurrences even at a very young age. And so she shares some of these with very little, if any, understanding or judgement. Most of these instances pertain to Elise's mother, who the reader comes to find is actually quite unhappy with her life.
But those instances are like little glimpses through the window's of Elise's tale. The rest, the time spent with Chiara, the fascination with her great-grandmother's stories, and her budding romance, are given the full on treatment as Elise lives through them.
Suzanne Kamata's latest blends just a touch of magic and whimsy throughout, endearing readers even more to Elise as she navigates the troubled waters of young adulthood. It's a short read, but one that packs a punch.
To see more stops on the tour be sure to check out the official TLC tour page here.
For more on Suzanne Kamata and her work you can visit her website here. You can also follow her on Twitter.
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