The Sea of Tranquility by Katja Millay


Title: The Sea of Tranquility

Author: Katja Millay

Release Date: November 13, 2012



I live in a world without magic or miracles. A place where there are no clairvoyants or shapeshifters, no angels or superhuman boys to save you. A place where people die and music disintegrates and things suck. I am pressed so hard against the earth by the weight of reality that some days I wonder how I am still able to lift my feet to walk.

Former piano prodigy Nastya Kashnikov wants two things: to get through high school without anyone learning about her past and to make the boy who took everything from her—her identity, her spirit, her will to live—pay.

Josh Bennett’s story is no secret: every person he loves has been taken from his life until, at seventeen years old, there is no one left. Now all he wants is be left alone and people allow it because when your name is synonymous with death, everyone tends to give you your space.

Everyone except Nastya, the mysterious new girl at school who starts showing up and won’t go away until she’s insinuated herself into every aspect of his life. But the more he gets to know her, the more of an enigma she becomes. As their relationship intensifies and the unanswered questions begin to pile up, he starts to wonder if he will ever learn the secrets she’s been hiding—or if he even wants to.

Dina’s 4.5 Star Review
This was a poignantly heartbreaking love story. It’s about an 18-year-old girl whose world was shattered three years prior by a brutal act. She hides out in a new town trying to escape her past, where she develops a deep connection with a boy who is equally devastated by a past filled with death and loss. 
This book artfully avoids the standard cliches of “boy saves girl” or “girl saves boy”. I both found myself wishing for the happy ending, but knowing that if the story took such a predictable turn I would be disappointed by its lack of originality. This book never disappointed. 
We see these two hurt and broken individuals struggle (sometimes unsuccessfully) to move beyond their pasts, but they need to heal themselves before they can heal each other. This book had some funny moments, witty dialog, and scenes that I couldn’t turn away from. 
I really liked the three main characters – each had very different personalities, but were developed with great depth. These three friends are each linked together with the common thread of fear and loneliness, hidden behind the masks they show to the rest of the world and sometimes to each other. 
Although this book had serious themes, it was an enjoyable read and ultimately redeeming and hopeful, if not a happily ever after.

About the Author

Katja Millay graduated with a degree in film and television production from New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts and has worked as a television producer and film studies & screenwriting teacher. Her debut novel The Sea of Tranquility was a recipient of the American Library Association’s Alex Award and was named one of the Best Books of 2013 by the School Library Journal. She currently resides in Florida with her family.

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