Author: Marisa Reichardt
Publisher: Farrar, Straus, & Giroux
Publication Date: January 12th 2016
Morgan didn’t mean to do anything wrong that day. Actually, she meant to do something right. But her kind act inadvertently played a role in a deadly tragedy. In order to move on, Morgan must learn to forgive—first someone who did something that might be unforgivable, and then, herself. But Morgan can’t move on. She can’t even move beyond the front door of the apartment she shares with her mother and little brother. Morgan feels like she’s underwater, unable to surface. Unable to see her friends. Unable to go to school. When it seems Morgan can’t hold her breath any longer, a new boy moves in next door. Evan reminds her of the salty ocean air and the rush she used to get from swimming. He might be just what she needs to help her reconnect with the world outside. Underwater is a powerful, hopeful debut novel about redemption, recovery, and finding the strength it takes to face your past and move on.
This book was a direct hit to all my emotions. Sadness. Anger. Hope. I read this in the early morning hours before I got up for my day, and the whole day afterwards I kept thinking about it. It also got me thinking. This is such a sad reality, not Morgan being afraid to leave her house. But mass shootings. They leave people emotionally and physically hurt. This book is a light of hope for one girl though.
After a shooting at Morgan's school, she can no longer leave her house. She is terrified. She can't control what's on on the outside. Until one day a boy moves in next door, suddenly Morgan is reminded of everything she use to have before it was taken away from her. Now Morgan wants to live. Not be afraid of the outside. But Morgan is harboring a secret, and believes as a result that the events of October fifteenth are just as much of her fault as the shooter.
My review won't do this book enough justice. It is terrifying real, you can feel Morgan's pain. The story tackles a tough subject, something that will really hit home for many people. Marisa's writing it beautiful, sensitive and clear. I look forward to reading more by Marisa in the future. She couldn't have made a better introduction in the YA world then with Underwater.
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I'm a SoCal native and high school writing instructor. I currently live in Los Angeles and can usually be found huddled over my laptop in coffeehouses or swimming in the ocean. My debut YA contemporary novel, UNDERWATER, will be out 1/12/16 from Macmillan/FSG and 4/7/16 Macmillan Children's UK. I love all books and all genres. While I do keep track of all the books I've read here, I generally don't do ratings or reviews.
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