The Sea of Tranquility by Katja Millay

I picked up The Sea of Tranquility by Katja Millay knowing nothing about it except for the insanely crazy high rating it had on Goodreads. Seriously, last I looked it was 4.72 with almost 3,000 ratings? That’s a first for me. YOU GUYS THIS BOOK IS SO GOOD THAT I WANT TO WRITE THE WHOLE REVIEW IN CAPSLOCK. I’m not kidding. I finished it less than 24 hours ago and I am aching to read it again. I want there to be a movie that I can watch 10 times in a row…or TV show…play…I’M NOT PICKY!

The Sea of Tranquility by Katja Millay

As far as the plot of The Sea of Tranquility goes, you really want to go into it fresh with only vague ideas of what will happen. This isn’t an action packed thriller or a snappy, quick-moving contemporary. The plot is slooooooooow (I mean that in a good way). It is all about character building and really digging in and getting to know Josh and Nastya, the two protagonists. They are packed full of issues – the book features violence and death and dealing with the effects – and not being able to deal with the effects. Bits and pieces of their story are given to you a little at a time, and knowing stuff beforehand would be a bummer on the reading experience. JUST SAY NO TO SPOILERS.

Things switch back and forth between Nastya and Josh’s POVs and I have never been so happy to  have a dual narration in my life. I couldn’t get enough of either of them. Watching them meet, get to know each other, develop a relationship…I SWOON. The chills abounded. Also, I teared up so many times, you don’t even know. Basically all they had to do to make me emote was look at each other meaningfully.

Now, I’m going to give you a gift. Don’t worry, after lecturing you about spoilers, I’m not planning on giving you any. I just want you to read the prologue:

I hate my left hand. I hate to look at it. I hate it when it stutters and trembles and reminds me that my identity is gone. But I look at it anyway, because it also reminds me that I’m going to find the boy who took everything from me. I’m going to kill the boy who killed me, and when I kill him, I’m going to do it with my left hand.

Starting with a bang = understatement of the year. After reading that one paragraph, for me it was immediately BOOM – All in.

Also, I discovered on Twitter that the Makeshift Bookmark ladies, Jen and Carla, were both reading it as well. I always forget what it can add to the reading experience to have friends you can tweet your crazed and capslocked enthusiasm to. (Also, for the record, they freakin’ loved it as much as I did.)

Forget my favorite reads of 2012 list, The Sea of Tranquility is on my fave reads OF ALL TIME list. The amount of emotion Katja Millay manages to pack into this story is ridiculous – the end brought on The Epic Ugly Cry of 2012. The book doesn’t just have the best prologue ever, it has the best last line ever. Seriously – the journey you go on culminates in the most gut-wrenchingly wonderful ending. I can’t even stand it.

crying gif

Read The Sea of Tranquility. Read it if you love young adult contemporary novels. Read it if you would rather walk naked across a field of razor sharp barbed wire with feet soaked in vinegar than read young adult contemporary novels. It doesn’t matter – you will love it.

To Sum it Up:

  • I might be the slightest bit evangelistic about this novel. (You have two weeks to read it or we won’t be friends anymore.)
  • I definitely recommend going into The Sea of Tranquility knowing next to nothing – it will make your reading experience a lot richer.
  • SOBBING. LOTS OF SOBBING. Beautiful, gorgeous, heart-wrenching and wonderful.

Check out The Sea of Tranquility by Katja Millay on Goodreads / Amazon

Other Reviews:
For What It’s Worth
Dear Author
Aesta’s Book Blog
Glitter, Bliss & Perfect Chaos

{ 9 comments… add one }

  • Carla November 28, 2012, 2:58 am

    ALLISON…I JUST, I CAN’T. I FEEL ALL OF THE FEELINGS. yes yes YES to the epic ugly cry of 2012. not gonna lie, I sounded like a dying animal. I could feel the burn of the massive lump in my throat that I was trying to soothe ‘it’s ok, it’s just a book, these people aren’t actually real’ and then I was like MY HEART IS SPILLING OUT ALL THE RAINBOWS SO WHY DOES IT HURT SO MUCH.

    I love this review and you are definitely right – I went into reading this because well, Jen made me do it. THIS IS WHY SHE IS THE BEST CO-BLOGGER IN ALL OF THE LAND. and I didn’t know ANYTHING about the plot or the characters; I think I even said to Jen at one point THIS BETTER NOT BE A BOOK ABOUT VAMPIRES. because as much as I hate to admit it, I only like my vampires that sparkle and have serious control issues. And it made it SO MUCH better. The slow unraveling of the plot was the perfect pace for the tone of the novel; you need that connection to the characters, that emotional investment. OH MY does Millay come right at you, fist closed around your heart.

    UGH. read it everyone. JUST READ IT.
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  • Nafiza November 28, 2012, 7:33 am

    All right! You have convinced me!
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  • Jennifer November 28, 2012, 7:45 pm

    Great review. Exactly how most of us recommend it to others. If you haven’t already,friend Katja on Facebook and join her discussion group. You’ll meet many of us who are part of this religion of TSoT.

    Reply
  • Ashley @ Book Labyrinth November 28, 2012, 10:19 pm

    Um YES, I completely agree with everything you’ve said here. Absolutely LOVED this one, and I also want to re-read it so badly and tell everyone about it. Absolutely on my faves of 2012 list, and probably one of my all-time favourites as well (will be solidified once I re-read, I’m sure).
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  • April Books & Wine November 29, 2012, 9:53 am

    OKAY FINE! They approved me on Netgalley for this and I can’t handle you not being my friend, lol.
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  • Britney November 29, 2012, 10:14 am

    Okay this is now at the top of my wish list. Amazing review!
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  • Katja November 29, 2012, 2:54 pm

    Thank you Allison! <3

    Reply
  • Estelle @ Rather Be Reading December 8, 2012, 10:38 am

    I have only heard TREMENDOUS THINGS about this book (Jen, April, Anna) and I have it on my Nook ready to read + I am scared. Very scared. Of crying. haha. Because when I cry, I do it up.

    Before this month is through, I will do it. I promise. Great review. I really didn’t need to know much about the book except that people have such strong reactions to it. That screams WINNER to me.

    Reply
  • Ashley December 23, 2012, 10:23 pm

    ‘Sup friend! :)

    I just read your review (obvs). I’ve never heard of this book before, and I’ll be honest and say I have no idea WHEN I’ll read it, but you have convinced me… I shall read this one. :) Adding it to the Goodreads now…
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