Saturday, 1 June 2013

The Sea of Tranquility by Katja Millay


I live in a world without magic or miracles. A place where there are no clairvoyants or shapeshifters, no angels or superhuman boys to save you. A place where people die and music disintegrates and things suck. I am pressed so hard against the earth by the weight of reality that some days I wonder how I am still able to lift my feet to walk.

Former piano prodigy Nastya Kashnikov wants two things: to get through high school without anyone learning about her past and to make the boy who took everything from her—her identity, her spirit, her will to live—pay.

Josh Bennett’s story is no secret: every person he loves has been taken from his life until, at seventeen years old, there is no one left. Now all he wants is be left alone and people allow it because when your name is synonymous with death, everyone tends to give you your space.

Everyone except Nastya, the mysterious new girl at school who starts showing up and won’t go away until she’s insinuated herself into every aspect of his life. But the more he gets to know her, the more of an enigma she becomes. As their relationship intensifies and the unanswered questions begin to pile up, he starts to wonder if he will ever learn the secrets she’s been hiding—or if he even wants to.

The Sea of Tranquility is a rich, intense, and brilliantly imagined story about a lonely boy, an emotionally fragile girl, and the miracle of second chances. 





Why didn't I read this earlier??!!

Wow. This book completely ruined me from books. Oh my goodness, this book is so brilliantly crafted, written so beautifully, each word touched my soul. It resonated within me so deeply that after reading The Sea of Tranquility, my mind kept getting flashbacks from TSoT. This book had such raw emotion that is sooooo deep, that it hits you hard each time. My eyes were riveted and glued on the pages, I didn't want to stop until I finished. 

Katja has her way of words that no matter how many times you re-read it, it still emotionally hits you. I want to put emphasis on the use of crafted that I mentioned earlier, the way Katja uses her words and crafts them, uses them in the right places is simply outstanding, it seems so effortless. Her writing is so stupendous and aspiring, that not only did I fell in love with the characters and their story but also her writing. And that's what I love about The Sea of Tranquility, so I am saying this now, I will be reading any books Katja will have out. She is a phenomenal author, and I love her to pieces for what she shared with us. I will never ever be the same after TSoT.  And I will be re-reading this book madly.  

“I live in a world without magic or miracles. A place where there are no clairvoyants or shapeshifters, no angels or superhuman boys to save you. A place where people die and music disintegrates and things suck.”
Katja had me there. She grabbed hold of my heart and held on so tightly to me, that I wouldn't do anything but read and read until I got to the very last page - oh the last line, the very last two words, the BEST ever!! 

She took away all my little pieces of sanity left while I was reading. I was broken into tiny pieces and slowly oh so slowly brought back together. While I kept breaking, the humour in this book gets me to laugh. So I smiled, laughed and cried with Nastya and Josh. 

This book is about Nastya who had to deal with what fate had handed her. She has been dealt with the worst hands ever and had to deal with it the only best way she knew how. Everyone copes with loss in the way they best know how, sometimes there isn't anyone that can help you, only you can and that's what Nastya did. She was never given a choice in what happened her in life. No one asked her for what happened to her.  She lost so much. 

Josh has his fair share of baggage too. He lost his family, each and everyone of them. First his mother and sister in a horrible accident,  than his father, than his grandmother and finally his last remaining family, his grandfather. Being left alone and having no choice in it, it's horrible and to cope with losing everyone is hard, very hard. He distance himself from everyone but Drew, his best friend and his family. They didn't let him and kept putting themselves in their lives. 
“We’re like mysteries to one another. Maybe if I can solve him and he can solve me, we can explain each other. Maybe that’s what I need. Someone to explain me.”
When Nastya moved there she meets the mysterious Josh Bennett and notices how everyone seems to be ignoring him and not bothering him as if he has a "force field" around him that no one can get through. She is drawn by him so she doesn't seem to leave him alone as Josh wants. And that's when things start to change. She is the only one who was able to get into his space and stay without any hindrance.  

Nastya would run in an exhausting hellbent way and so for the first time she ran without remembering where she is going and gets lost, trying to get back to her aunt's place, finds her way to Josh's garage. Ever since she found the garage after her run, she would stay there for a few hours without saying anything, until one day the slience is broken and Nastya starts asking Josh questions.

“I know at that moment what he's given me and it isn't a chair. It's an invitation, a welcome, the knowledge that I am accepted here. He hasn't given me a place to sit. He's given me a place to belong.”

Josh didn't know how he felt about Nastya's visits to his garage but he didn't tell her to go away. Within him it just felt right and so he never objected it. After awhile he made her a chair and gave her a place to belong. And things start to change.  

“I just wanted one person who would look at me and not want to see someone else.” 
She moved away so people wouldn't know of her past and she can have a choice in how people would view her. So instead of being looked at for the wrong reasons, she gave them a reason to look at her that she chose. However, what she appeared to be wasn't her and she kept trying to find someone who would see her, not her in past self, that died and not what she is showing but her the real her. 

I have to say this book isn't insta love. It starts as friendship and grows into love and it takes time for it to happen. Lots of people said the story starts of slowly but to me, it was just perfect the pace works so well. It makes sense, nothing was rushed. We get to know them so well, get into their heads and they get so real for me. I felt their pain, they became me. It was like this book joined into my soul and we became one.
I knew I wouldn't be able to move on if I didn't re-read my favourite parts and I did, so many times. This book took such a deep chunk of my heart so sneakily that while I am writing the review I feel that deep love I have for this book glow through me.

This book is a place I can always escape to, my place where I belong, in the garage with Josh. ;) Like the garage was Nastya's home and her safe place, it became mine to. Who would have knew that a garage is the best place to ever be. I have to thank Katja for writing this masterpiece. This book forever will be my favourite of all times, the one I will be madly recommending to everyone.

I am so crazy about this book it should tell you that you NEED to read it now. YOU have to. I command it. There are only a few books like this one out there, that takes your soul with them.


Favourite Quotes: 

“There are so many things that can break you if there's nothing to hold you together.”
“Daylight won’t protect you from anything. Bad things happen all the time; they don’t wait until after dinner.” 

“There's a reverence in the way he kisses me that frightens me, because it's the most wonderful thing I've ever felt.”

“People like to say love is unconditional, but it's not, and even if it was unconditional, it's still never free. There's always an expectation attached. They always want something in return. Like they want you to be happy or whatever and that makes you automatically responsible for their happiness because they won't be happy unless you are ... I just don't want that responsibility.”

“I am pressed so hard against the earth by the weight of reality that some days I wonder how I am still able to lift my feet to walk.”

“Just so you know,” he mimics me, “I would chop that table up and use it for firewood before I would ever choose anything over you.”

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  1. Fantabulous review, Trisha! This book will stay with me always. I will also read ANYTHING Katja writes because she is an artist.

    1. Thank you so much!!! <3 I'm glad you think so. :) She definitely is an artist!!