Published by Pan Australia on August 30th 2016
Genres: Contemporary, Romance, Young Adult
Amazon | Book Depository | Publisher | Angus & Robertson
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This is a love story.
It's the story of Howling Books, where readers write letters to strangers, to lovers, to poets.
It's the story of Henry Jones and Rachel Sweetie. They were best friends once, before Rachel moved to the sea. Now, she's back, working at the bookstore, grieving for her brother Cal and looking for the future in the books people love, and the words they leave behind.
Welcome to our stop on the Words in Deep Blue blog tour!
The only word I can think of to describe this book is ‘delightful’. Words in Deep Blue is everything that I want in a book. It’s beautifully written, just the right amount of emotional and has a realistic romance that I can get on board with. If I could send a love letter to this book, I would. (Also, if you catch me sneaking letters into copies of this book around Sydney, I’m not crazy. I just really love this novel!)
Words in Deep Blue was not what I thought it was going to be. It was better! I expected romance to be at the forefront of the book and to be the primary theme but there was so much more to it. There were amazing family and friendship elements that created a wonderfully balanced novel. It had a realistic plot that focused on not only the romance between the characters but also on grief and loss. It’s about discovering the things that you love most and matter to you the most when faced with the possibility of losing these things or people forever. The emotions in the book were genuine and it’s impossible not to connect with the story and be moved and touched by it. What I loved most about this novel was the love of books that the characters had and the joy that they felt from being able to connect with the words on the page and the words of other people. It reminded me of why I love books so much and I can’t see anyone who loves books not enjoying Words in Deep Blue. The bookshop setting of the book was also beautiful and I loved the idea of the Letter Library where people can leave letters for other readers in books.
Words in Deep Blue is definitely a character-driven story. It’s Rachel’s character and Henry’s growth that makes this book so wonderful to me. Rachel was an extremely strong character who’s dealing with the death of her brother (who I also absolutely loved and was sad that I never got to meet him). Her life has changed forever and she’s not sure how she’s going to get back on track when nothing in her life is the same anymore. She moves back to her old town to try to escape what happened but ends up having to deal with the fall out that she had with her former best friend, Henry. Henry has his own troubles to deal with. His on-again, off-again girlfriend, Amy, has broken up with him again, weeks before their overseas trip. Not only that, she’s now with his archnemesis. For most of the book, Henry believes that Amy will come back to him and he behaves in ways that are not only rash but kind of pathetic. Being able to see Henry’s development throughout this book is what made me fall in love with it. The way that he grows and discovers the things that mean the most to him was spectacularly written by Crowley. He’s definitely not a perfect character but the way that he works through these flaws and is passionate about the books and the people in his life was a beautiful thing to see.
The relationship and friendship between Henry and Rachel in the book was another noteworthy aspect of the novel. I was expecting the book to be quite romance-heavy but this wasn’t the case at all. Henry and Rachel are friends for the majority of the novel and the romance is quite a slow-burning one, if I can call it that. There’s a lot of unrequited love in the book but the novel ends in the most beautiful way and I couldn’t have asked for anything more.
Words in Deep Blue is a beautiful, beautiful book that I will be rereading over and over for years to come. It’s poignant and touching, with beautiful characters and relationships that will move you to tears. I can’t recommend this one more highly and I hope everyone picks it up!
Rating: 5 out of 5
Thank you to Pan Macmillan Australia for providing a review copy of the book!
About the author
Cath Crowley is a young adult author published in Australia and internationally. She is the author of The Gracie Faltrain trilogy, Chasing Charlie Duskin, andGraffiti Moon. In 2011, Graffiti Moon won the Prime Minister’s Literary Award for Young Adult Fiction, the Ethel Turner Award for Young People’s Literature, and was named an honour book in the Children’s Book Council, Book of the Year. Cath writes and teaches in Melbourne.
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