Feb 5, 2021

Review--Sea Witch Rising by Sarah Henning


“The Little Mermaid” takes a twisted turn in this thrilling sequel to villainess origin story Sea Witch, as the forces of land and sea clash in an epic battle for freedom, redemption, and true love.

Runa will not let her twin sister die. Alia traded her voice to the Sea Witch for a shot at happiness with a prince who doesn’t love her. And his rejection will literally kill her—unless Runa intervenes.

Under the sea, Evie craves her own freedom—but liberation from her role as Sea Witch will require an exchange she may not be willing to make. With their hearts’ desires at odds, what will Runa and Evie be willing to sacrifice to save their worlds?

Told from alternating perspectives, this epic fairy tale retelling is a romantic and heart-wrenching story about the complications of sisterhood, the uncompromising nature of magic, and the cost of redemption.



Sea Witch Rising by Sarah Henning continues the story of Evie the sea witch and what became of her after she helped a little mermaid live her dream on land. Told through Runa, Alia's twin sister, and Evie's points of view, we get a story both on land and sea and how two young women will go to great lengths to keep their homes safe.

The story starts with Alia being on land and Runa mourning the loss of her twin. She knows that Alia must kill the prince she loves so much before her final day as human or else she will die. But Alia loved Nik too much to want to kill him, even at the cost of her own life. Runa makes a deal with Evie to go up on land and help her sister do the deed, so that she may at least live out her life as a human, but as you might imagine, things go irrevocably wrong.

War is brewing both on land and in the sea. Explosive mines are being set into the ocean and when they go off it kills everything around it and above it should that be the case. When Runa is forced to change her plans in order to save the rest of her kingdom, she's willing to do whatever it takes to save her sisters, friends, and her new friends on land.

One thing that kind of bothered me about this book was how very little we got to hear from Evie. It was not an even amount of alternating between points of view, which saddened me since she was our star in the first book, naturally. 

This is definitely a sequel book, so you should read Sea Witch before reading this one. This one picks up some years after the first book, but since Evie is now immortal, it seems like little time has passed.

I did enjoy the friendships that Runa soon developed on land. She ends up helping a small group of witches and try to save their world from the impending war. While I will say that one of these friends is a very handsome boys, it was rather pleasing to see that the romance wasn't a focal point. It was just kind of there every once in awhile.

This book was definitely full of surprises! Mostly from the characters and the choices they made. They weren't always what you would expect to happen. What I did really enjoy was how the book continued to follow the fairy tale from Hans Christain Andersen. It's easy to want to think of Disney's The Little Mermaid, but this is definitely not that story! There's some paid homage to Andersen if you know where to look for it. Though I will admit, when we saw the Sea King being his imposing self, I kept seeing him as King Triton.

The ending was pretty satisfying too. Hard choices were once again made that led the two heroines on their chosen paths. While I would've liked a more concrete bit of closure, the story wasn't a wash at all. It was a magical adventure about the "other" little mermaid and it was a most enjoyable read!

Overall Rating 4/5 stars

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