Hello people! Hope y’all are doing great! I am so excited to be a part of a blog tour after four months – work had me really tied up and then Covid hit us hard. I am glad that things have started going back to normal but I hope people don’t stop taking precautions just yet. Diving into the review, I’d just like to take a moment to appreciate the title of this book – it sounds so dreamy and poetic! I absolutely adore it!!
Book Title: Words Composed of Sea and Sky
Author: Erica George
Publisher: Running Press Kids
Release Date: May 25th, 2021
Genre: Young Adult | Contemporary | Romance | Historical Fiction
This modern summer romance set on Cape Cod features two young adult poets divided by centuries.
Michaela Dunn, living on present day Cape Cod, dreams of getting into an art school, something her family just doesn’t understand. When her stepfather refuses to fund a trip for a poetry workshop, Michaela finds the answer in a local contest searching for a poet to write the dedication plaque for a statue honoring Captain Benjamin Churchill, a whaler who died at sea 100 years ago. She struggles to understand why her town venerates Churchill, an almost mythical figure whose name adorns the school team and various tourist traps. When she discovers the 1862 diary of Leta Townsend, however, she gets a glimpse of Churchill that she didn’t quite anticipate.
In 1862, Leta Townsend writes poetry under the name Benjamin Churchill, a boy who left for sea to hunt whales. Leta is astonished when Captain Churchill returns after his rumored death. She quickly falls for him. But is she falling for the actual captain or the boy she constructed in her imagination?
“Everything we do now, echoes far ahead of us”
In present day small town of Cape Cod, when Michaela Dunn learns that there’s an ongoing competition for writing a heartfelt dedication for the statue unveiling ceremony in honor of Captain Benjamin Churchill and the prize is entry to a poetry workshop, she decides to participate.
During her research, as she struggles to understand the town’s obsession with a man who hunted whales, she stumbles upon a diary of a certain Leta Townsend from the year 1862 and gets a glimpse of the man Benjamin Churchill was.
Leta Townsend lived in Cape Cod during the nineteenth century, at a time when women were less likely to be published. Therefore, she started writing her poems under the disguise of Benjamin Churchill, a boy from her class, rumored to have been died at the sea. That is, until, he comes back alive.
“When people look for something that is left of me, all they’ll find is you.”
This is a beautiful story of love, romance and art. The two parallel timelines, though centuries apart, have been woven together exceptionally well and I loved how interconnected the storylines from past and present felt. Pierce boys from both past (Elijah) and present (Finn) world were my favorites. The setting of Cape Cod is gorgeous and I feel I have developed a secret obsession with lighthouses after reading this book!
While the concept and storyline are simply beautiful and by the end I was craving for more, I felt the whole book was too fast paced. It lacked dialogues and feelings at various places – like the relationship between Mack and her stepdad could have been explored better.
Years to come, when they speak of him,
All talk of me will not be heard.
They ache to love a broken boy, Not the girl whose love he spurred.”
I would like to thank the publisher and The Favourite Pages Book Club for providing me with an e-Arc of the book in exchange for an honest review. You can check out more about the blog tour here.
About The Author:
Erica George is a writer of young adult fiction. She is a graduate of The College of New Jersey with degrees in both English and education, and is currently an MFA student at the Vermont College of Fine Arts. She resides in scenic northern New Jersey, but spends her summers soaking up the salty sea air on Cape Cod. Many themes in Erica’s writing rotate around environmental activism and helping young people find their voice. When she’s not writing, you can find her exploring river towns, whale watching, or engrossed in quality British drama with her dog at her side