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February 10, 2016

Review and Interview: The Abyss Surrounds Us by Emily Skrutskie

The Abyss Surrounds Us
Emily Skrutskie
Page Count: 288
Publisher: Flux
Published On: 2/8/16

Cover: 3.5/5
At first I wasn't a fan of the spacey background and animated character but now after reading the book I do think it's fits.

Characters: 5/5
Reckoners are a huge part of the book. They are basically genetically modified creatures used to protect ships from pirates. They take the best attributes of several creatures and put them in an egg. When this embryo hatches it is up to the trainers to start work immediately. Cas has two reckoners we get to read about in some detail.

Cassandra aka Cas is a Reckoner trainer in training. She has potential to be the greatest but her inability to follow directions-hard fast rules- is her downfall. I do love how we get to watch her grow into her feelings. At times she has to make pretty harsh decisions but she does so with a planned grace.

Santa Elena the criminal pirate. All she wants is a Reckoner for her ship so she can rule the seas with her crew. Even though she is supposed to be the "evil" villain in this story I enjoyed how she went about her piracy. Yes she is using Cas for the Reckoner pup but she also seems to care about what Cas has to say. Santa Elena has a past and I would love a novella about it.

Plot: 5/5
Pirates, giant genetically modified creatures and one girl who controls the fate of this world. If a Reckoner pup falls into the hands of pirates the balance of the trade and travel route will be thrown off. Cas a new trainer will have to step up to the plate and do the job she's been training half her life for. If she fails the pirates win, if she succeeds her family will never speak to her again but she will have freedom. The lengths Cas goes to protect those she has come to trust ignores the evil she has been told pirates are.

Overall Rating: 5/5
This is a mash-up novel with a little science and little fantasy and a dash of romance. This was one of my most anticipated debuts and I'm so glad I received an early copy.

Pick up your copy of The Abyss Surrounds Us NOW!!

1. Did you listen to a playlist while writing?
During the actual act of putting words on a page, I can't be listening to music with lyrics. It's something about focusing on one language at a time. I can work if I put on a film soundtrack, but music with words just slows down my thought process. I do keep an inspiration playlist though, full of songs that remind me of the story I'm working on.

2. Want to share your playlist?
Sure! My playlist for THE ABYSS SURROUNDS US can be found on my Spotify account here:

3. Outside your book who would you "Ship" your MC with?
Tough question! Cas is pretty choosy when it comes to romantic stuff, so it'd have to be someone who she can really connect with. Is it cheating if I pick someone from my CP's upcoming book? Because Daphne, from Tara Sim's TIMEKEEPER, is exactly Cas's type—a no-nonsense blonde who isn't afraid to mix it up. 

4. Describe your book using emoticons.

5. Why YA as your genre?

I started writing YA as a fifteen-year-old, figuring that because I was a young adult, that's where my voice fit best. Now, six years later, not much has changed. YA literature has always appealed to me because it's so story-driven. There's a constant need to be an efficient storyteller, and that's something I really value when I write. Maybe as I get older, my voice and style will shift into the territory of adult, but right now, YA is home.



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