Learning to Swim by Annie Cosby
Genre: YA Contemporary/Fantasy
The ebook is free until Oct. 16! Amazon
And make sure to add the second book Learning to Live, coming Nov. 30, to your Goodreads TBR!
When Cora’s mother whisks the family away for the summer, Cora must decide between forging her future in the glimmering world of second homes where her parents belong, or getting lost in the bewitching world of the locals and the mystery surrounding a lonely old woman who claims to be a selkie creature—and who probably needs Cora more than anyone else.
Through the fantastical tales and anguished stories of the batty Mrs. O’Leary, as well as the company of a particularly gorgeous local boy called Ronan, Cora finds an escape from the reality of planning her life after high school. But will it come at the cost of alienating Cora’s mother, who struggles with her own tragic memories?
As the summer wanes, it becomes apparent that Ronan just may hold the answer to Mrs. O’Leary’s tragic past—and Cora’s future.
About the Author:
Annie Cosby reads and writes in Galway, Ireland, where she lives with her boyfriend and a whole lot of seagulls. Learning to Swim is the first book in her USA Today-recommended Hearts Out of Water series, and the second book releases Nov. 30. When she’s not writing, she’s usually editing for awesome clients like Anna Katmore and Month9Books/Swoon Romance. And she loves to hear from you!
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“Do you know about the Merrow, dearie?”“I don’t think so,” I said.
She nodded and seemed to deliberate whether to go on. I knew she would. She always did. “The Irish told each other stories about a sea creature much like the mermaid. Only she’s called the Merrow.” She readjusted the scarf on her head as she nodded knowingly. “They’re sweet, sweet creatures. Capable of real love. Well, human love—if that can be said to be real love.”
“Do you believe in them?” I asked skeptically.
The old woman’s eyes remained fixed on a spot on the horizon. I followed her gaze. There was nothing but boats and seagulls, the normal fare of the ocean. She finally seemed to find herself and her eyes continued to rove.
“They say that love cannot overcome nature,” she finally said. “Supposedly the nature of the Merrow always overcomes whatever love they held for their human man. She will always go back to her people under the sea.”
Sounded to me like a cruel comment on female nature made by a bitter man.
“And the merman, oh, there are stories of mermen. Terrible stories. The mermen have cages at the bottom of the ocean in which they keep the souls of our drowned sailors and fishermen.”
A chill ran through me despite my unwillingness to become involved in the story. The pale, bloated body at the pier drifted to the forefront of my mind. Souls, chained to the bottom of the ocean, fighting uselessly, perpetually against their chains, appeared in my imagination. The soul had long been gone from that bloated body when I found it.
I only then became aware of the old woman looking at me. Her eyes were narrowed and she looked at me with an intensity that I had previously only seen her use on the ocean. I felt my cheeks redden.
“They play music, too,” she said. “Do you ever hear music under the water?”
I’ve never been under the water. I shook my head.
The old woman sighed. “I suppose one must listen for it, then. I haven’t listened in a very long time. A very, very … very long time.”
Narrated by Wendy Pitts
Learning to Swim
paperback copy of Learning to Swim + some swag. Open internationally.