Fathom Five, by James Bow
This is book two in James Bow's series "The Unwritten Books". Book one was reviewed on this blog last winter, and is titled The Unwritten Girl. I liked the first book a lot, and I like this even better!
Book two picks up some three years after the end of book one. At first this was distressing, as I wanted to know what the characters were up to in that time, but as the story progressed I realized that this was necessary because the levels of emotional maturity in this adventure were beyond the pubescents of The Unwritten Girl, and required a development of their friendship beyond a few weeks. Rosemary and Peter are now 15, and are experiencing some confusing feelings for each other. Are they best friends? Or, are their feelings for each other becoming romantic? When Peter makes the first tentative steps toward moving beyond friendship Rosemary panics. The development in Bow's writing is evidenced in the way he manages to capture how each of the characters are feeling.
Then, when Peter is drawn into a perilous alternate world by Sirens residing in the waters of Georgian Bay, it is up to Rosemary to conquer her fear, and to rescue him. Only Rosemary is able to see through the glamour of the Sirens, and she must find a way to release Peter from them.
I really enjoyed this book. There is an incredible amount of plot packed into the rather small volume, but it does not feel rushed. Bow manages to give us character development, and some lovely scenery and moments in amongst the fast-paced action.
Highly recommended, both as a book in the series and a stand alone. This author has really developed in the space of the two published books, and I, for one, am looking forward to seeing what he comes up with next.