When fifteen-year-old Esme Silver objects at her father’s wedding, her protest is dismissed as the action of a stubborn, selfish teenager. Everyone else has accepted the loss of Esme’s mother, Ariane – so why can’t she?
But Esme is suspicious. She is sure that others are covering up the real reason for her mother’s disappearance – that ‘lost at sea’ is code for something more terrible, something she has a right to know.
After Esme is accidentally swept into the enchanted world of Aeolia, the truth begins to unfold. With her newfound friends, Daniel and Lillian, Esme retraces her mother’s steps in the glittering canal city of Esperance, untangling the threads of Ariane’s double life. But the more Esme discovers about her mother, the more she questions whether she really knew her at all.
I received this book from the author through my affiliation with Book Sirens. I was not required to write a positive review, all comments and opinions are entirely my own.
Her mother has gone missing and her father just remarried. Is seven years too long to still grasp onto the hope that Ariane will return? Or should Esme move on too and just accept that her mother met her fate and will never come home?
Esme’s Wish is a story of emotion, questions, and adventure. What begins as a mental breakdown with Esme coming to reason that everyone is likely right about her mom, then takes a sudden turn and launches her into a world lined with the hope that maybe, just maybe, her mom is still alive in this world.
Esme is an easily likable character and one that we can sympathize with. Though her actions make her out to be a typical, stubborn teenager in the eyes of adults, we learn about her and realize that she is vastly misunderstood. We, as the readers, get to know her in the way that her mother knew her and therefore the treatment she receives for still believing that her mom might return is seen and felt by the readers as unjust and unfair.
The world of Aeolia is so, so beautiful. The vibrant colors and descriptions, the magic and mystery, and the creatures are all so enticing. This world encouraged my imagination to soar into the sky with the colorful and powerful dragons, just before delving deep into the waters with sirens, if the rays and ghosts didn’t get me first 😉 It’s definitely a world that I would love to see in a movie someday.
What I loved most about Esme’s Wish is how realistic Esme reacted to finding a new world. She was skeptical, questioning her sanity, and didn’t just jump into believing like typical fantasy novels. Esme’s discovery of the quest was also very well done. It wasn’t forced, it was happened upon by accident and though there was help from other characters along the way, I loved that everything happened for a reason other than “she was destined”. It was so much more unpredictable like that.
Esme’s Wish is great for both Middle Grade audiences, and Young Adult audiences. It’s completely clean, with no vulgar language, no romance, and no intense action scenes (though there is some action and mentions of blood). Overall, I was very, very pleased with this book and cannot wait for Book 2 to release!