“The Abyss Surrounds Us” by Emily Skrutskie

YES. This book. ^^^^^^ Part dystopian, post-apocalyptic, alternate reality, futuristic sci-fi on the high seas with genetically created ocean monsters and pirates!

The setup: A catastrophe happens in the future that makes the waters rise around the earth, creating the need to split all the countries up into smaller, more manageable lands. Lots more water is the perfect environment for pirates to rise up and claim the seas, right??? Well, wealthy corporations hire genetic scientists to create HUGE creatures they hatch in labs and train to bond with ships and protect them. The creatures are called Reckoners and there are turtle-like ones, snakes, whales, octopi, all kinds.

Cassandra is someone who has been brought up learning to train the Reckoners. The ship she works for gets attacked and she gets kidnapped by pirates. The captain forces her to train a Reckoner pup they “acquired” illegally. Cas meets another pirate named Swift and they have a bit of a romance that is complicated by the circumstances. The Captain is a biotch! I hated her. 😛

But, this book was great! I found the premise very unique and awesome. I’ve never read anything quite like it. There is good diversity representation. The main character is of Asian heritage and she likes girls (Swift is the girl pirate she falls for). I totally shipped them! I was into the book from the start and read it very quickly. It’s pretty short. There’s no fancy writing or anything, but as far as Young Adult fantasy goes, I highly recommend!

I loved the idea of the Reckoners! I’m so excited this is a duology and there is another one to read. I definitely felt like there was much more yet to be told in this world.

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