The Sea in You

The Sea in You by Jessi Sheron began in 2015 as a webcomic and has been transformed into an enthralling full-color graphic novel. The story might initially feel familiar, but Sheron's exceptional, irresistible adaptation ensures an entertaining, visually rewarding experience.

Corinth has been at her Ocean City, Md., high school for a year, but she hasn't made any friends. Her single dominating relationship is with Seth, who is more bully than the loving boyfriend he claims to be. While voluntarily cleaning up beach trash one day, she's mysteriously drawn into the water by a fantastical being. The creature, deciding not to eat Corinth after all, throws the bewildered teen out of the waves. Corinth returns to the coast the next night and again meets the hungry mermaid--who thankfully proves easily satiated by Corinth's burger. A magical friendship develops encouraged by toothsome snacks, enlightening books and sign language (which Corinth uses daily with her mother). On land, the mermaid becomes Skylla, a name the pair choose together. Underwater, Skylla must face difficult challenges, but her love for Corinth makes her both stronger and braver; she's ready to risk her very self to be at Corinth's side.

Sheron masterfully celebrates the limitless power of true friendship with swirling, energetic technicolor panels that meticulously intensify the impressive emotional range of her characters. Her reworking proves exceptionally clever: Corinth and Skylla's visit to the library brilliantly reveals--and challenges--the source fairy tale, but Sheron appends a didn't-see-that-coming ending (beginning?) that will delight readers. --Terry Hong, BookDragon

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