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Infinite Blue by Darren Groth
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Infinite Blue

by Darren Groth, Simon Groth (Author)

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I received this eARC from Orca Books via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Obligatory Summary

This is a difficult book to summarize because, honestly, I don't really know what happened.

Basically, take that one movie about a girl who loves surfing but gets bitten by a shark and losses an arm but learns to surf again, and merge it with a fever dream version of Aqua Marine, and you'll still not have what happened. This book makes no sense. I'll give you what I did understand, though.

So, Ash saves Clayton from dying in the prologue and in the first chapter they're suddenly casually declaring their love. Ash is a hardcore swimmer who breaks a world record and gets swept up in her mother's dream of stardom. Then she suffers a devastating accident that changes her life forever. Clayton...draws, I guess? He has a sassy chain-smoking Finnish grandma and that's about all I can really say.

The Writing (and Worldbuilding?)

So, is this an urban fantasy or a magical realism fever dream? I honestly don't know.

The book felt like two distinct coherent stories chopped up and smashed together: 1) Ash, the swimmer, and her power hungry, emotionally deprived mother, facing the aftermath of a terrible accident; 2) Clayton and his grandma chill and she regales him with stories about his grandfather who was a soldier in Korea. And then suddenly, there's mystical drawings (because you can ~accidentally~ draw things) and water-lover mermaids and Cuba. All in less than 200 pages. It was a mess, honestly. The grandma was the only interesting character, and her love story told entirely in anecdotes was more real, passionate, and believable than the forced mess between two wooden planks I was supposed to be invested in for no discernable reason.

The Characters

Ash: Between the two of them, she definitely had more personality, but honestly, she was so unrelatable. She was always talking about her ~training~ and her mystical ~connection~ to the water, and as someone who has literally never swam in my life (I'm a wimp and not standing on solid surfaces freaks me out, okay?) I couldn't relate whatsoever.

Clayton: You'd think I related to him because he draws and so do I but, but he was so boring. He spends the whole book in Ash's shadow being vaguely confused. And honestly, same. (I guess we do relate lol)

Blythe: Excuse me while I look for character arcs for any of these characters. Oh wait, there aren't any. Blythe is just as mean and stubborn and unreasonably villainous as she is at the beginning by the end.

Coach Dwyer: How do you pronounce that? D-why-er? D-w-ear? Who knows?

Tuula: Heck yeah, give more sassy chain-smoking Finnish grandma!

Conclusion

I kinda hated this book. It sucks. Don't read it when it comes out. Except maybe if you want Tuula in your life, which is a good reason. Read it for her. She's totally worth it. ( )
  Faith_Murri | Jan 5, 2019 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
A short cute romance that I enjoyed reading. I liked both Ashley and Clayton and thought they had great chemistry. I also enjoyed the fact that Ashley was a swimmer, as I could relate to that.

If I could change anything about this book I would definitely change the length. As much as I liked the story I wanted more of it, the ending was a little odd to me too but all together it was an enjoyable read. ( )
  Teri-Ann | Dec 29, 2018 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Quick, easy read. The author's style is minimalist, with only important details shared in the scenes and conversations. However, the relationships and personalities come through strongly without a lot of detail. I was a swimmer growing up, so I enjoyed the familiar competitive swimming situations. The ending threw me, leaving me thinking "that was weird" rather than "that was cute", which was my thought through the whole rest of the book. ( )
  ReadHanded | Nov 26, 2018 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
I received this book from the Library Thing Early Reviewers giveaway in exchange for an honest review.

Infinite Blue was a cute, quick read. The characters, Ashley and Clayton, had a good chemistry, which I enjoyed. The book was also extremely well written.

Overall, this book was a sweet read about the lives of two teenagers. It surprised me how much I enjoyed it and I would recommend it to fans of unique, easy to read contemporary.

Please feel free to check out my other reviews on my blog: https://pagesenchanted.wordpress.com/
My full review for Infinite Blue, when posted on my blog will be linked here. ( )
  PagesEnchanted | Oct 7, 2018 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Very quick read. I wish I had a lot to say about this book, but I don’t. I think the fact that it was such a short book left me not remembering much. It is however a very well written book that I would love to sit down and read again to try and actually dive deep into it. ( )
  AbbieLauren2018 | Oct 1, 2018 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Groth, DarrenAuthorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Groth, SimonAuthormain authorall editionsconfirmed
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