Ocean’s Gift Review Tour
By Demelza Carlton
January 31 – February 19
Book Promotions by Literary Nook
The book description:
Sirens don't fall in love with humans. For centuries it has been so...
But Sirena is different. She lost her first love to sharks and a storm, cursing the islands that stole him from her.
Times have changed and she must swim ashore once more, to the islands she once cursed.
Gone are the boats powered by sail and steam - jet boats with GPS are now the order of the day.
Enter Joe, the deckhand on the Dolphin. A handy man to have around when the lights go out. He'll fix your generator and have the lights back on in no time, no worries.
But can he seduce a siren?
Or will she swim away before he can uncover her secret?
A book about lobsters, beer and boobs, on some cursed islands off the coast of Western Australia. At least, that's how Joe tells it.
For Sirena, it's a very different story.
Barnes and Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/oceans-gift-demelza-carlton/1114691067?ean=9781479399062
The official book trailer:
After dinner, I sat on the veranda in a chair made of old craypots and cracked open a beer.
It was almost dark, so I could only dimly make out the outlines of the row of jetties in the anchorage. For all its isolation, the Abrolhos are bloody noisy, I thought. The birds were peeping and wailing, the wind was whistling around the big Fisheries camp in the middle of the island and rattling a metal roller door that I wished someone would fix. The generators buzzed like air conditioners on a hot night in Hedland. The waves came from the south, rolling through the anchorage and lapping at boats and jetties alike.
I heard squeaky chattering, like dolphins, and a splash. Then another. I got up and walked to the edge of the cliff, peering out across the anchorage. Did dolphins come out at night?
I drank my beer, scanning the water for any sign of them. I turned my head at another squeak and splash, but still I saw nothing. I finished up the beer and threw the empty out over the water, where I thought the sounds had come from.
I caught movement in the corner of my eye and turned, hoping to catch a glimpse of something. Out of the darkness came a tall woman. Her hair hung down her back, almost to her waist, framing what looked like perfect curves. I felt like a teenager again, when I’d been mesmerised by Pamela Anderson’s boobs bouncing along the beach in Baywatch. As she walked along the path, coming closer, I saw that her perfect curves included an incredible pair of breasts that wouldn’t have looked out of place on Baywatch. Her long hair was blonde and, in keeping with the Baywatch theme, what I could see of her skin was lightly tanned and smooth. She wore a fitted blue t-shirt, the colour of the ocean on a cloudy day, and a little pair of denim shorts that exposed most of her shapely legs. In each hand, she held a fish by the gills. One was a small shark, the other some sort of fish with a white chin and fangs.
I dimly heard something clunk near my feet, but all my attention was fixated on the approaching vision.
I swallowed a couple of times before I could speak. “Been fishing?” I asked her, my voice coming out hoarse.
“My deckhands have been, and they know he’s my favourite.” She held up the fanged fish.
“What is that?” I asked. Don’t tell me it’s a vampire fish, and that’s why you like it. My little sisters would.
She laughed, a pleasant sound. “He’s a baldchin groper, possibly one of the tastiest fish in the sea, after tuna and wahoo, of course.”
I’d like to grope her one day. As for wahoo…I shook my head – that had to be the beer talking.
She was less than two metres away from me now and I saw she was the same height as me. Her face was open and pretty; her smile infectious.
She stuck both fish under one arm and knelt down in front of me. I froze in panic. She picked something up from near my feet and slowly straightened up, close enough to touch if I’d had the guts to lift my hand. Her eyes were stormy blue – the same colour as her shirt – and they were laughing.
“Have you been playing with the dolphins?” she admonished, holding up what I recognised as the beer bottle I’d thrown into the water. It was now dripping wet, half full of seawater. I took it from her, wordlessly. “You shouldn’t do that. They throw things back. You’re lucky it didn’t hit you and only landed by your feet.”
She looked out across the dark water, frowning. I heard squeaking and a big splash, then nothing.
“I’m Giuseppe. Joe. Joe Fisher,” I managed to say, sticking out a hand in the faint hope she’d shake mine. “Deckhand on...whatever boat Skipper Hartog has.”
She turned back to me. When she took my hand, hers was cool and firm. The frown vanished, replaced by a friendly smile. “Ah, the new deckhand on the Dolphin. I hope you’ll be better than your predecessor, not that it’ll take much. I’m Vanessa, skipper on the Siren, and your next-door neighbour.” She waved at the house beside mine, painted to match her shirt.
Oh my God, I don’t live next door to a grumpy, flatulent old man. Instead, I get the hottest woman I’ve ever seen in the flesh for a neighbour. “So I should come to you if I need to borrow a cup of sugar?” I asked hopefully.
“I think I’m out of sugar.” Her tone was slightly less friendly as she frowned again. “Milk or coffee I may be able to assist you with.” She took a deep breath. “As long as you don’t feel the need to have any wild, drunken parties, we should get along fine. Or I’ll set the dolphins on you.” She smiled at me again, her voice light with laughter. She winked, then turned and went into her blue house.
I was left staring after her. I think I’m in love. I was already wondering how to throw a wild, drunken party so she’d come over to complain. Maybe even in a nightdress with no bra…
“Did you manage dinner all right?” Skipper’s voice came out of the darkness, as he came up the path behind me.
I turned to face him. “Dinner’s fine,” I managed to say. “I just met...” I looked toward her blue house, unable to articulate her name.
He laughed. “You met Vanessa.”
“She seemed really nice,” I stammered.
“Yeah, she can,” he said darkly. “Look, the best advice I can give you is to stay away from her.”
My heart fell. “Let me guess, she has a father and brothers who are all pro-wrestlers and her husband is a prize fighter?”
Skipper laughed again, but there was an edge to it. “No, Vanessa got her fishing licence from her mother, who died a few years ago. Now her mother, Serena, was one beautiful woman.” He paused, evidently remembering. “And Vanessa looks just like her. She’s got two deckies, who might not balk at taking a swing at you, but not pro-wrestlers or prize fighters, either of them.”
“Then she’s married to the Incredible Hulk?” I suggested.
“Nah mate, Vanessa’s not married, and I don’t think she wants to be.” He hesitated. “Look, just stay away from her and don’t piss her off.”
Or she’ll set the dolphins on me.
“Sure.” I shrugged. “Well, good night. See you in the morning.”
My Review: 4 1/2 stars
Definitely an interesting tale. I haven't read anything about mermaids in a long time, so this one brought back good memories, as well as bringing up the environment and what us humans do to everything around us, especially the ocean. This was a solid story that was refreshing and well told. I loved how different the alternating viewpoints were, from Joe and Vanessa. Joe was so refreshing and playful. Vanessa looked at everything so completely different from Joe. Quite interesting and very entertaining to see how it all played out, and see how their different worlds came together. Their worlds are vastly different, and yet the same. It was way too easy to finish this book, it went so fast and it was so good. I can't wait to read the next two books in the series to find out what happens. Fantastic job Demelza!
Character profile of Joe Fisher:
Demelza Carlton has always loved the ocean, but on her first snorkelling trip she found she was afraid of fish.
She has since swum with sea lions, sharks and sea cucumbers and stood on spray-drenched cliffs over a seething sea as a seven-metre cyclonic swell surged in, shattering a shipwreck below.
Sensationalist spin? No - Demelza tends to take a camera with her so she can capture and share the moment later; shipwrecks, sharks and all.
Demelza now lives in Perth, Western Australia, the shark attack capital of the world.
The Ocean's Gift series was her first foray into fiction, followed by the Nightmares trilogy.
Ocean's Gift series
This is the first book in Demelza Carlton's Ocean's Gift series, which currently includes:
Ocean's Gift (Book 1)
Ocean's Infiltrator (Book 2)
Water and Fire (Book 3)
You'll never look at mermaids the same way again.