Release Date: July 17th 2016
Buy The Book: Amazon
Santiago escaped kidnapping, torture, and near death last time she was in the ocean. Now back on the safety of land she resumes life as normal, but finds she is plagued with lingering effects of the Sirens’ brutality and thoughts about the world under the surface. When she finds shocking information in her abuela’s journals, Santi must make a choice that will decide not only her fate, but also that of millions of others.
Will Santi choose to follow her destiny and return to the ocean to face the demons of her past? And what of her budding feelings for her long-time best friend Rogan? The only thing certain is that Santi's decisions will change the course of her life forever.
This is the second book in the Siren Anthology, and it picks up a little while after the events that happened in Breathing Water, which I reviewed on my blog here. Santiago is back on land and spending time with her mother. After the Siren attack, Santiago’s hearing hasn’t been the same on land and the damage may be permanent.
As with the first book, Surface Tension splits the story into two parts. It follows Santiago as she continues to decide where she wants to spend her life, on land or in the water, and it also follows a character named Carmen a few decades earlier than Santi’s story. Carmen is a character we’ve never met before but she turns out to be a hugely important part of the story.
She is a Serra with a mission to bring the heir of King Tullus, who we read about in the previous book, down under the water as only his heir has the power to kill Zitja and end her Siren reign of terror. But when she meets the heir, her feelings for him develop and she finds herself torn between her two worlds. As with Nephira’s story in the first book, I found myself anticipating Carmen’s story a lot more than I did Santiago’s. Carmen’s side of the story was utterly captivating and I admired her courage and determination.
What I did enjoy about Santi’s story this time around was that we got to see her spend more time with her mother, and I loved the bond between the two of them. I also enjoyed reading about Santiago deal with her hearing loss after the Siren attack, and how she was comping with her life afterwards. But once again, I didn’t enjoy the romance between her and Rogan as much as I wanted to. I’m failing to feel that spark between them. However, I was interested in learning more about the Bonding of Serras and further discovering how their Ku feels.
Rogan is a character I feel we’ve only gotten to half know. We only know about his life through the eyes of Santiago and so his story seems to constantly revolve around her. He also comes across as quite serious most of the time, and what I’d love more than anything is to see him and Santi have some more light-hearted and maybe fun moments amongst everything that goes on. Then maybe I’d feel a little more connected to them and their relationship. What I did love was the flashbacks we got to see of their younger years under the water, showing us why these two characters feel the way about each other that they do.
As with Breathing Water, there were parts of the story I couldn’t quite connect to, but other parts that I really adored. The world building in the series really is fantastic and very cleverly thought out. I enjoyed getting to learn more about the mythology of the Serras and their underwater world, and I’m interested to see how the characters move on from the shocking events at the end of Surface Tension.
I don't have a graphic for three and a half crowns, but that's my overall rating for this book!