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The Story Seeker

In search of the ultimate story, finding many good ones on my way. Take a look if you want to see what I found so far.

The Sea of Tranquility

The Sea of Tranquility: A Novel - Katja Millay

I had such high expectations for this one. It's hard to judge a book that everyone loves and you just can't seem to understand why.
The thing I liked about this book: the story, or better yet, the idea behind the story. It was an idea that could have been developed really well if only the author would have known how to do it.
She's taking death and attempted murder way to lightly. This story is also a jumble of ideas put all together just for the sake of them being there, they did not explain her feelings, her loss, her hope or lack thereof. Let's just list a few books that take one of these ideas and concentrate only on them, but do a great job in developing their characters in the process:
- the refusal to speak: Speechless
- the trauma of being killed inside: Living Dead Girl
- the decision to let go of everything: Cracked Up to Be
- living after you have lost everything you love: On the Jellicoe Road
- the feelings you would have toward a tormentor: Stolen: A Letter to My Captor
Now, I'm not comparing those books with this one in terms of characters and circumstances, because I know those facts are very different, but all the books listed above have something that this book lacks: a soul. While reading those I could feel the character's pain and resolve, their evolution towards good or bad during the story. Their feelings were real, the characters were dynamic and amazing, I could grasp their personality and what they were thinking.
None of this is true for The Sea of Tranquility. Nastya remains a cryptic and childish character till the end. If this story is about something, it's about the inability to move forward, but it does a very bad job at it. Unlike the story of Living Dead Girl, where Alice is in hell every single day of her life, Nastya is surrounded by opportunities to get over herself, but she does not do it. And I get it, that's the point, not everyone gets over their traumas, but in her case, it feels like her only trauma is not communicating with others.
The writing was average at best; simplistic phrases and the story just jumped around during the entire book. We never get any "angst" so to say. You just get 2 characters talking about what happened. While reading this I felt like I was watching a reality show on TV about some characters discussing this poor girl's life.
About Josh, he was a one dimensional character, just like Nastya. He's the good guy that sometimes does something wrong even though it's not his fault. Wow....such an interesting character to read about....not >.<.
Overall, this could have been a better read if the author would have chosen a less delicate subject and would have concentrating on developing her characters instead. A slice of life without complex characters is like a cake without cream between the layers: dry.


Also, Sunshine is a terrible nickname.