Book Review of Josephine Against the Sea
The Children’s Book Review
Written by Shakirah Bourne
Ages 8+ | 304 Pages
Publisher: Scholastic | ISBN: 9781338642087
What to Expect: Families, grief, cricket, Caribbean culture, magic
Filled with the sounds and smells of the Caribbean and drawing heavily on Caribbean culture and myth, Josephine Against the Sea is both a gripping thriller and an authentic exploration of family love and grief.
Josephine wants nothing more than to play cricket and keep her Daddy to herself—but neither ambition is working out. Daddy seems determined to date, and despite her talent and passion, she just can’t seem to get herself on the school cricket team. Josephine knows that if she can just get on the team, she can distract Daddy from all these women by rekindling their shared passion for the game.
However, not only does her plan to be accepted as the only girl on the team fail, but now a new girlfriend has turned up, and she’s proving hard to scare off. Mariss may seem friendly enough, but there is something sinister about her—from how her body appears to heal itself miraculously to her hypnotic singing that can hold a roomful of people spellbound—including Daddy. If Josephine can’t work out how to get rid of this girlfriend, she really might lose Daddy for good this time.
Josephine is a thoroughly endearing heroine – determined, loyal, and not too ‘girly’—and readers will love her sense of humor and her honesty. Unlike many coming-of-age stories with female protagonists, this one focuses on the father/daughter relationship, reminding readers that families come in all shapes and sizes. The use of untranslated creole and authentic cultural details throughout the story provides a fantasy story that feels fresh and original and offers non-Caribbean readers a glimpse beyond the stock stereotypes while allowing Caribbean readers a mirror to see themselves.
Josephine Against the Sea is a beautiful and engrossing fantasy read.
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About the Author
Shakirah Bourne is a Barbadian author, filmmaker, and lover of mangoes. She has written and produced four movies, including a thriller where she fell off the back of a moving vehicle trying to get a shot and a comedy that she filmed during an earthquake and in a cave with bats. She currently resides in Barbados in the Caribbean and spends most of her time staring out at the sea, thinking about new stories to tell.
To find out more about Shakirah, check out her website: www.shakirahbourne.com.
Dr. Jen Harrison reviewed Josephine Against the Sea. Discover more books like Josephine Against the Sea by reading our reviews and articles tagged with Books Set in the Caribbean, Family Relationships, Fantasy, Grief, and Thrillers.
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