Welcome to a world made dangerous by the sea and by those who wish to profit from it. Where a young girl must find her place and her family while trying to survive in a world built for men.
As the daughter of the most powerful trader in the Narrows, the sea is the only home seventeen-year-old Fable has ever known. It’s been four years since the night she watched her mother drown during an unforgiving storm. The next day her father abandoned her on a legendary island filled with thieves and little food. To survive she must keep to herself, learn to trust no one and rely on the unique skills her mother taught her. The only thing that keeps her going is the goal of getting off the island, finding her father and demanding her rightful place beside him and his crew. To do so Fable enlists the help of a young trader named West to get her off the island and across the Narrows to her father.
But her father’s rivalries and the dangers of his trading enterprise have only multiplied since she last saw him and Fable soon finds that West isn’t who he seems. Together, they will have to survive more than the treacherous storms that haunt the Narrows if they’re going to stay alive.
Imagine — your father abandons you on a small island and leaves you there without any means of survival, no weapons, no coins, nothing. Then, you realise you are actually surrounded by the worst species of thieves in this world, and you need to find a way to survive among them, whilst also outsmarting them.
That’s what happens to our main character, Fable, who has to try to stay alive on this island and eventually, get enough coins to gain a way out of there and find her father. She becomes a resourceful dredger, but knows she can’t trust anyone, so she lives alone, only trusting herself.
Fable’s story is not just a story of survival, but also a story about coping with grief, finding a place to belong. She is a survivor, smart and strong. I felt for this character throughout the whole story and I was rooting for her until the very end of the book.
The plot is so fast-paced, it gave me anxieties. I liked all side characters, in particular Willa, she was another strong female character. The other main character, West, was probably a bit underdeveloped, but I have the feeling he still has much to say.
The ending left me jaw-dropped and I can’t wait for the sequel – already added to my TBR.
The most impressive feature of this story is the detailed description of life on a ship, and the sailing language used. While I probably didn’t completely get what the characters were saying, it really helped to set the atmosphere of the story and bring the reader on board the Marigold. On top of that, the description of Fable’s diving session in the sea really made me miss the beach.
Lastly – a bit of a spoiler probably – there was one of the best and most romantic kissing scenes I have ever read.