Josephine Against the Sea by Shakirah Bourne
Genre: Middle Grade Fantasy
Publishing Date: July 6, 2021
Meet Josephine, the most loveable mischief-maker in Barbados, in a magical, heartfelt adventure inspired by Caribbean mythology.
Eleven-year-old Josephine knows that no one is good enough for her daddy. That’s why she’s desperate to make it onto her school’s cricket team. She’ll get to play her favorite sport AND make sure her fisherman daddy is too busy attending her matches to date.
But when tryouts go badly, the frustrated Josephine cuts into a powerful silk cotton tree and accidentally summons a bigger problem into her life . . . The next day, Daddy brings home a new catch, a beautiful woman named Mariss. And unlike the other girlfriends, she doesn’t scare easily. Josephine knows there’s something fishy about Mariss–she sings in a strange language, eats weird food, and seems to exert mysterious control over everyone she meets.
Josephine knows that Mariss isn’t what she seems … she might not be human! But who’s going to believe her? Can Josephine convince her friends to help her and use her cricket skills to save Daddy from Mariss’s clutches before it’s too late?
About the Author:
Shakirah Bourne is a Barbadian author and filmmaker. Her first feature film, the comedy-drama, PAYDAY, was screened throughout the Caribbean, USA and UK. She has written three films since its debut in 2013: Two Smart (writer/co-director), Next PAYDAY (writer/producer) and A Caribbean Dream (writer/director). A Caribbean Dream is distributed by Verve Pictures and had a cinema release in London in 2017. The film won several awards, including Best Drama at the National Film Awards UK, Best International Feature at the Charlotte Black Film Festival and best UK Feature at the London Independent Film Festival.
Her short stories have been featured in many literary journals (see below). Her self-published collection of short stories, IN TIME OF NEED (2013), won the prestigious Governor General Award for Excellence in Literary Fiction. She was a finalist for the BURT/CODE Award for Caribbean Literature in 2018. The Caribbean edition of her middle grade novel, MY FISHY STEPMOM, was published by Blue Banyan Books (2019) and the North American edition, JOSEPHINE AGAINST THE SEA, will be published by Scholastic in 2021. She was a Part-time Lecturer at the Errol Barrow Centre for Creative Imagination, University of the West Indies, Cave Hill Campus, and is a Part-Time Lecturer in Screenwriting at the Barbados Community College. She currently holds Certificates in Screenwriting from the Barbados Community College and the University of Edinburgh, and an MA (Hons) in Arts and Cultural Management from Queen Margaret University.
First off I would like to thank you to TBR & Beyond for allowing me a spot on their Blog Tour and to Edelweiss Plus and Scholastic for providing me an arc.
I must admit when I saw the upcoming tour I was well excited as the book cover was stunning, it was a Middle Grade and it was based on Caribbean Mythology which I knew I liked after reading the Jumbies Series by Tracey Baptiste which I enjoyed a lot.
But I think Josephine Against the Sea is far superior. From the first few pages I knew that Shakirah had got me hooked I absolutely love Josephine from the very start she was spunky, loved her daddy and loved cricket and she so wanted to play on the boys team even if her coach thought that girls can't play cricket. Her friendship with Ahkai who is autistic is so beautiful and heart warming even though Akhai who hardly spoke the reader was able to see that they both cared deeply for each other. Shakirah wasn't scared from slowly going from a light hearted scene into a much darker scene and this again kept me hooked. I loved how the book was written in how a Bajan person would speak and the side characters all played their role in making it very authentic. You may have noticed I have not given anything about the book as I feel this needs to be read and enjoyed. Now let me just quickly mention the ending well I thought it was going the way already hinted in the book but oh my days Shakirah had other ideas and all i can say is wow and this is one way a person learns about consequences. Shakirah made me laugh, cry and every other emotion there is. I am so glad and grateful I got to read it and for all these reasons Josephine Against The Sea is getting a very big and huge 5 star rating I really wish I could give it more stars. I had an absolute ball and I see that we are going to be seeing more of Josephine and I will not only be pre ordering the next book but also buying my very own Physical Copy of Josephine Against The Sea.