Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea

devil and the sea

I picked it up at the library. It was on the corner aisle and I liked the title, flipped it open and fell in love with the prose, so I brought it home. And now, a few hours later, I think I’m done with it. Why?

I love the premise, the small town on the coast setting. I like Violet—the way she repeatedly uses the word “damn” and the way she describes her world. I’m even okay with the furry-toothed creature living in a tunnel.

And I love the prose. “Our town was small enough that I never developed a healthy fear of strangers. To me, they were exciting things, gift-wrapped and full of possibilities, the sweet smell of somewhere else wafting from them like perfume. And so River West, stranger, didn’t stir in me any sort of fear, only a rush of excitement, like how I felt right before a really big storm hit, when the air crackled with expectation.”
And, “I was beginning to feel stupid, like some dumb girl who opens her mouth and lets all her thoughts fall out.” Who hasn’t felt like that?

So, why did I put it down on page 63? Because Violet did something that no heterosexual, seventeen year old girl could ever do. She took a NAP with a boy that she just met that morning. A boy she likes. A “strong, lean” brown-eyed boy with “been-in-the-summer-sun-every-day skin.” She lies down on a sofa, her back pressed into his torso, and falls asleep for hours.

So not happening.
I’ve been napping for more than half a century and I can tell you that if a boy I liked asked me to lay next to him for a nap—it wouldn’t happen. I might pretend to sleep. And maybe if I hadn’t slept in days and days it could happen, but more than likely, I’d be thinking about my knees and how they bump together, and wondering where to put my hands, and worried that my hair would tickle his nose. My mind would race and so would my blood and sleep just wouldn’t happen.

So, even though April Genevieve Tucholke writes sentences as beautiful and mysterious as her name, I’m pretty sure I’m done with this book.

I actually went to the library to pick up two books, Kathryn Harrison’s Enchantments: A novel of Rasputin’s daughter and the Romanovs and Robert Alexander’s Rasputin’s Daughter, because the story brewing in my head—the book that I know how it ends and how it starts but haven’t a clue what happens in between, will have something to do with Rasputin…and the Pre-Raphaelites…even though their glory days happened decades apart…and on different continents.

Maybe falling asleep beside a boy with a straight nose, a crooked smile and panther hips isn’t as improbable as Rasputin meeting the Pre-Raphaelites…

But no. It totally is.
big beyond the tent copy

And my books? Beyond the Fortuneteller’s Tent where Petra walks into a fortuneteller’s tent at a Renaissance faire in modern-day Orange County and walks out into Elizabethan England or Beyond the Hollow, where Petra drinks Rip Van Winkle’s ale and travels back to the Catskills Mountains, 1810? Totally believable.

hollow  (1)


About Kristy Tate

USA Today bestselling author Kristy Tate has come a long way from small-town Washington. Her avid curiosity and love of reading have carried her to thirty plus countries. (She loves to travel to the places she reads and writes about.) She's the author of more than twenty books, including the bestselling and award-winning Beyond Series and the Kindle Scout winning Witch Ways series. She writes mysteries with romance, humorous romance, light-hearted young adult romance, and urban fantasy. When she's not reading, writing, or traveling, she can be found playing games with her family, hiking with her dogs, or watching movies while eating brownies. She is also a popular public speaker and presents writing workshops for schools, libraries, and fundraisers. All proceeds donated to charity. References available upon request.
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6 Responses to Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea

  1. E. Ayers says:

    Seventeen-year-olds are like energizer bunnies, they just keep going. I’d love to have that energy again, that zest, and to be that invincible.


  2. bellastreet says:

    I hate it when that happens! Fantastic prose then a clunker of a story. Like you, I say if you’re going to go unbelievable…go all the way 🙂


  3. leighmorgan1 says:

    Unless I was knocked unconscious by some unknown event, carried to a couch and unbeknownst to me some man/boy wrapped his arms around me to prevent hypothermia, or something equally absurd, there is NO-FLIPPING-WAY I’d “nap”. That would have sucked my out of the story too, Kristy, no matter how beautifully written. 🙂


  4. Joan Reeves says:

    Ooh! Love the covers for the Beyond series. Suspend belief and anything is believable. *g*


  5. stephaniequeen says:

    Kristy, you are soooo right! Not only would I not have believed about the uneventful nap, but I would be ANGRY about it – because I’d WANT something to HAPPEN!!! (I’m a fan of romance after all!)


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