My Rating: 4 stars
Genre: Contemporary/ Magical Realism
Age Category: Middle Grade
Type of romance: no romance
A summer romp full of mystery, new friends, and maybe a mermaid!
Eleven-year-old Anthoni Gillis is not the kind of kid who believes in fairies, unicorns, or even the word maybe. She’s more of a comic-books girl. So when her mom brings her to Thunder Lake for a summer at the Showboat Resort, she doesn’t believe the local rumors about the Boulay Mermaid.
Anthoni has bigger fish to fry. She’s always wanted a true-blue friend. But it’s been hard to find one, since for the past five years she’s been bouncing from town to town, helping her mother sell Beauty & the Bee cosmetic products to keep them both afloat. This summer will be different, though. Anthoni has a plan – a foolproof checklist for making lifelong friends! There won’t be any maybes this time.
But as she grows entangled in local gossip and her mother stretches the truth, Anthoni must decide if she’ll “stick to the plan”, like always, or dive into a summer full of extraordinary possibilities.
I received a free copy of this book from Tantor Audio and voluntarily reviewed it.
Contemporary Middle Grade isn’t a genre I read a lot, but from the first moment I saw this book I wanted to read it, so when I got the chance to listen to the audio version I jumped on the chance. I am so glad I listened to this book as the narrator was awesome and I really enjoyed the story. If you’re looking for a fun summer vacation read with a hint of the magical this is definitely one to check out.
Maybe a Mermaid is told from the point of view of Anthoni, she and her mom never stay in one place for long. She doesn’t have any real friends and this summer while they’re staying at the showboat resort she is determined to make a true blue friend. This is a lovely read, it brings back that vibe of holidays and making new friends. It’s about truths, lies, seeing what you want, not seeing what you what’s right in front of you and ofcourse friendships. But most of all this is just a very entertaining story.
I was swept away by this story. I liked Anthoni’s voice. How she felt mature, but also very much like a kid in other ways. I liked seeing the way she viewed the world and her bond with her mom. I really felt her emotions, from her hope of making a true friend to her fear and happiness depending on the scene. I thought Anthoni’s character felt very realistic, from the way she believed in her mother’s stick to the plan attitude’s and copied things she saw her mom do, but she’s also very much her own person and I liked seeing her find her own way.
I liked the friendships Anthoni makes. She has her goal set on Maddie, who she was friends with a few years ago. They both like the same stuff and Anthoni just knows she will be the perfect friend, but it’s hard to have Maddie see that too. Then there’s this boy DJ she runs into who is a bit weird. And then there are her weird encounters with Charlotte. I really liked seeing how Anthoni dealt with things and how she grows and changes throughout the book. I thought she was a great character to read about.
I liked the characters in this book. Everyone had their own personality. I liked DJ how he was so unapologetic himself even while most people saw his as weird. Charlotte was such an interesting character and it was great seeing her from Anthoni’s point of view and learning more about her as the story progressed. I liked how quirky she was and you never quite knew what she would do next. And then there were Maddie and Julie, who both have plenty of scenes with Anthoni as well. I wanted to see if Anthoni would become friends with them or not.
I liked the bit of magical realism that this story had. Anthoni doesn’t believe in fairies or mermaids, but some mysterious events at the showboat resort do make her wonder. I liked this touch and hint of the magical. That hint of maybe. That magical feel of what if.
The narrator for this one was awesome. I really liked her voice and how she narrated this book. each character had a different voice. I liked how her voices for the kids were different than the ones she did for the adults and her voices for the boys were just as good as the ones for the girls. I am glad I picked up the audio version of this one as it was a joy to listen to.
To summarize: This is a great contemporary middle grade read with a touch of magical realism. It’s about summer vacation and making new friends. It’s about truth and lies and how to deal with those. And most importantly about making friends and what makes for a true friend. I liked the mystery of the mermaid as well as seeing Anthoni trying to make a true blue friend. And her interactions with various side characters. I thought the author did a great job with the characters and I thought she depicted the characters in a realistic way. I liked reading about Anthoni and seeing how she dealt with things and seeing her relationships with the people around her. I especially liked how she resolved things at the end. The ending was great and while it leaves a few things open ended, it ends on a hopeful note. The narrator did such a great job with this book and I liked all her different voices for the characters. It was a joy to listen to this one!