Rave Reviews Log: Mysteries & Suspense

October 30, 2006

The Eyes of the Amaryllis

By Natalie Babbitt
Rating: 4 1/4 stars
Reviewed by Noelle

When her grandmother breaks her leg, Jenny is given the chance to stay with her in her oceanside house for 2 weeks and help out. Jenny is thrilled because she has never seen the ocean before and she instantly feels drawn to it. Her father, although raised by the sea, hates it because his father's ship, the Amaryllis, went down right before his eyes when he was still a teen, with all hands lost. But Jenny soon finds that she isn't there to help her grandmother cook and clean. Instead, Jenny's job is to search the shore at every high tide for some kind of token to wash up from the depths of the ocean. Her grandmother believes that Jenny's grandfather will send a sign to her to show his love from the bottom of the sea. Jenny is quickly caught up in her grandmother's fevered tale, but isn't sure if she believes it or not until she meets Seward, the ghost of a drowned man that only Jenny and her grandmother can see. Seward is also searching the shores for it is his job to return to the sea anything it values that washes up. Then comes the day when Jenny finds something washed up, something of value. Her grandmother takes it as her long awaited sign, but Seward warns that the sea wants it back and will take it back by force if it must. Jenny finds herself in the midst of a ghost story where the ghosts are obedient to the sea and sea is not a force to mess with. How can you defend yourself from the mighty ocean? How can any of this be real? Readers will find themselves drawn into believing just as Jenny does, in the power of many things. A fascinating tale.


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