Author: Sarah Glenn Marsh
Genre: historical fiction
Published: expected October 11 2016
Source: publishers via edelweiss
Witch’s apprentice Bridey Corkill has hated the ocean ever since she watched her granddad dive in and drown with a smile on his face. So when a dead girl rolls in with the tide in the summer of 1913, sixteen-year-old Bridey suspects that whatever compelled her granddad to leap into the sea has made its return to the Isle of Man.
Soon, villagers are vanishing in the night, but no one shares Bridey’s suspicions about the sea. No one but the island’s witch, who isn’t as frightening as she first appears, and the handsome dark-haired lad Bridey rescues from a grim and watery fate. The cause of the deep gashes in Fynn’s stomach and his lost memories are, like the recent disappearances, a mystery well-guarded by the sea. In exchange for saving his life, Fynn teaches Bridey to master her fear of the water — stealing her heart in the process.
Now, Bridey must work with the Isle’s eccentric witch and the boy she isn’t sure she can trust — because if she can’t uncover the truth about the ancient evil in the water, everyone she loves will walk into the sea, never to return.
Short and mysterious, Fear the Drowning Deep is a quietly unsettling novel set in the early 1910s. The atmosphere of Glenn's mix of history and fantasy is a rich one; enveloping and encompassing from the get-go. The overall feel of the novel is eerie, and though the plot centered at the heart of Bridey's story is somewhat shallow and full of some out-dated YA tropes, it remains a well-executed and engaging read despite.
Main character Bridey and the atmosphere of the novel are the high points for me. I was much more interested in the mythology and 'version' of the world that she lived in than say, the romance with Fynn. Bridey is not the most defined of protagonists, but she's reasonably well-rendered and she's inquisitive enough to get the plot rolling when it needs to. There's just not much depth to her -- much like the world around her. It's a very superficial kind of story.