Published by Razorbill (9.27.2022)
Genres: Mystery, Thriller
Format: Audiobook, 400 pages
Length: 12 hours, 50 minutes
Narrator: Valerie Rose Lohman
Twelve years ago, Avril’s mother drowned at Whisper Cove theater, just off the rocky Connecticut coastline. It was ruled an accident, but Avril’s never been totally convinced. Local legend claims that the women in the waves—ghosts from old whaling stories—called her mother into the ocean with their whispering. Because, as they say at Whisper Cove, what the sea wants, the sea will have.
While Avril doesn’t believe in ghosts, she knows there are lots of different ways for places, and people, to be haunted. She’s spent the past twelve years trying to make sense of the strange bits and pieces she does remember from the night she lost her mother. Stars falling into the sea. A blinding light. A tight grip on her wrist. The odd sensation of flying. Now, at seventeen, she’s returning to Whisper Cove for the first time, and she might finally unravel the mystery of what really happened.
As Avril becomes more involved with camp director Willa and her mysterious son Cole, Whisper Cove reveals itself to her. Distances seem to shift in the strange fog. Echos of long-past moments bounce off the marsh. And Avril keeps meeting herself—and her dead mother—late at night, at the edge of the ocean.
The truth Avril seeks is ready to be discovered. But it will come at a terrible cost.
Like many other reviewers have said, this book wasn’t nearly as good as Dark and Shallow Lies (which had a fantastic atmosphere, btw). But still, it was a decent read.
I liked the summer camp setting and the fact that it was on the ocean. The pacing was rather slow for most of the book, but the little snippets we got here and there were enough to keep me interested. The audiobook narrator was pretty good, which also helped with the pacing issues.
I wish I had been able to connect to the characters more. They were all pretty dull to me, so I didn’t care about any of them. I didn’t care about the romance either (unfortunate considering it’s the main focus of the book in the middle), which I felt moved too quickly and lacked chemistry. I outright hated the play scenes where Avril and Cole were acting out basically their exact romance in play form. Those scenes were awful to me and I just wanted to skip them. I found the play scenes to be completely dull and pointless, View Spoiler »despite the fact that the play itself is such an important and integral part of the story and why her mom died. « Hide Spoiler However, I did really appreciate the platonic relationship between Avril and Lex. It’s not very often you see a M/F relationship that is strictly platonic, it was refreshing!
There is an interesting twist at the end! I was starting to suspect who the killer was, but it was a good reveal. I have a lot of negative things to say, but this book wasn’t bad by any means. It was good while I was reading it, it just won’t make a lasting impression on me and was overall kind of underwhelming. I also got pretty annoyed with the constant use of the word ‘fuck.’ I curse like a sailor sometimes, but it was overused to the point it felt unnecessary.
Writing style: 3/5
Overall rating: 2.5/5