Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
Genre: YA Contemporary
Anise belongs in the water, the place where her life begins and ends. This is the last summer she’ll spend in Santa Cruz with all her friends and she’s determined to make it the best. When her aunt Jackie has an accident that leaves her with two broken legs, she has to go with Nebraska with her dad, leaving behind the waves and beach for skate parks and babysitting her three young cousins.
Girl Out Of Water took my breath away. This story had everything I didn’t know I loved about books. It’s the kind that touches your soul without hurting too much.
Girl Out Of Water focuses on long-distance friendships, absent mothers, families we are born in and the families we choose. Anise being unable to respond to her friends’ messages because of the distance between them felt like me. That feeling of being left out resonated with the friendships I left back home. But for Anise, those friendships were rekindled because there’s so much more to friendship than being in the same location and growing up together.
The family dynamics were a refreshing change from the usual absent/deceased/missing/not-on-the-page families. Anise’s relationship with her aunt and cousins was heart-warming. Anise’s mother floats in and out of her life and that’s what holding her back; the fear that she’ll turn into her mother, like a wild child in Lana Del Rey song with no place to call home except wherever she lays her head.
The supporting characters were very diverse which added to the authenticity of the book. None of it felt like tokenism, it just was. a vibrant cast of LGBTQ+ and characters of colour. The love interest, Lincoln, a black disabled character who was entirely himself and their entire friendship is adorable and I love how it develops.
Laura Silverman’s writing is beautiful. I know I say this a lot about books whose pages touch my soul but that’s what makes writing beautiful: the ability to touch your soul. Her prose was beautiful, I’ve never been to the ocean, I’ve never skated in an empty swimming pool but between those pages anything was possible.
Some Of My Favourite Quotes
“Maybe hospitals have McDonald’s for one simple reason: fries stitch families back together.”
“Sometimes it’s hard to see outside of yourself…especially when you don’t want to.”
“It’s okay not to be okay.”
“There’s so much of the world that I want to see. But here – here, I can see the past.”
“…because it would mean she took the time to notice I’ve done something to be proud of.”
“Is it possible to leave a place without leaving anyone behind?”
Thanks for reading! Have you read Girl Out Of Water before? What did you think of it?