Monday, August 30, 2010

Review: Sea by Heidi R. Kling

Summary: Haunted by recurring nightmares since her mother’s disappearance over the Indian ocean three years before, fifteen-year old California girl Sienna Jones reluctantly travels with her psychiatrist father’s volunteer team to six-months post-tsunami Indonesia where she meets the scarred and soulful orphaned boy, Deni, who is more like Sea than anyone she has ever met.

She knows they can’t be together, so why can’t she stay away from him? And what about her old best friend-turned-suddenly-hot Spider who may or may not be waiting for her back home? And why won’t her dad tell her the truth about her mother’s plane crash? The farther she gets from home, the closer she comes to finding answers.

And Sea’s real adventure begins

Review: I really enjoyed this book. I knew for sure I loved it when I cried. I'm not one for crying while reading, but Sea's journey through heartbreak and loss was touching and left me really feeling for her as she struggled to keep moving forward, even as her world was falling apart. Kling weaves a beautiful and moving story about loss and healing, and finding your place in the world.

Sienna (Sea) is a wonderful charecter. I liked that Kling didn't pigeonhole her into a sterotype. Sea was a strong girl, who has a giving heart, but who was left broken by her mother's dissapearance. Facing her fears and traveling overseas to help tsunami victims is a step she has to take to heal. It was great to see that helping others was helping her heal as well, even if she wasn't exactly conforming to the mold her father was hoping for. Her relationships with both Spider and Deni were great and I liked the fact that there were these two guys who helped her heal in very different ways, but that they weren't cast in a stereotypical "love triangle" plot line.

One thing that gave me pause was how quickly she fell for Deni, disregarding safety and common sense as she dove head first into both a relationship and the mission to help him find his family. Then I thought about the fact that at 15 you're a supposed to be a bit impulsive and naive, and while I still wish there was a little more consequence to her actions, I understand that it was something Sea had to do.

I also really liked that Kling looked seriously at the way people survive after a disaster like a tsunami. While this is ultimately a story about one girls survival through the personal tragedy of losing her mother and coping with that loss, it was nice to see it tied in with seeing how we all deal with the global tragedy that is the result of a tsunami. Seeing the emotional damage in the children at the orphanage, the community cost in the lost homes and the cost in lives through Deni and Rema's eyes as they try to regain their homes gave a great window into how we are all connected and can help eachother. Watching Sea help Elli and the other orphans and seeing how in doing that she was able to find peace within herself and with the loss of her mother was phenomenal.

In the end I cried. For what Sea lost, for what the orphans lost, for the sea turtles and Sea's mom, but mostly for what they all gained by knowing eachother. I'm hoping there will be more to come about Sea and Spider, about Rema and Deni and the other orphans and even about Vera. Even if this story isn't continued, I'm excited to see whatever Kling writes next.

Book Trailer:

About Heidi R. Kling:


  1. Fantastic review! I'm hoping this will come out in paperback and I'll definitely get myself a copy!

  2. Great review. It sounds like it's quite a moving story. In reading your review, it reminds of of "Hurricane Season." Here's a link to our review of it if you're interested:

  3. Thank god there is no love triangle, Im quite bored of seeing that in YA books!

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