By the Sea is the perfect story to read by the beach—since it takes place at a coastal town in Massachusetts. I’ve had a long love affair with the ocean and with mythology, so it comes to no surprise to anyone who knows me that Bythe Sea would center around selkies. Not like selkies get a lot of press though—apart from The Secret of Roan Inish and that movie with Colin Farrell, Ondine, they’re pretty sparse in pop culture. Regardless, I love the sort of wistful longing the story inspired and I had a blast bouncing off of the allure of the ocean to mirror the feelings between Megan and Niall.
Curious as to what it’s about?
Most kids had imaginary friends, but most weren’t like Megan’s friend Niall. There were rules: only at night and only by the sea. She could’ve sworn he was real, but when someone vanishes without a trace, what else can you believe?
All that was seven years ago, buried in the past until Niall shows up in town with his tight swimmer’s body and easy smile. For Megan, just the sight of him is enough to tear open a scar that never fully healed. However, their reunion only elicits more questions. Niall’s keeping secrets, unbelievable ones, and as Megan delves into the supernatural depths of who he really is, she’s sure he’ll vanish again.
Megan’s not stupid—she knows how bad it’ll hurt if she gets involved. The first time Niall disappeared, she never thought she’d recover. But the moment they lock eyes, it’s too late—because Megan will go to any length to see that boy smile.
He’d only meet me by the sea. I’d come by myself at night, making some excuse to my folks or telling them I wanted to go find shells at the beach.
I’d lied. Covering my tracks the best I could, I’d always brought home a shell he’d helped me find, anything from pieces of clams to slipper’s shells. I fingered the conch around my neck—the last shell Niall had given me before he’d left.
The salty breeze picked up strands of my hair and rippled them like pennants as I made my way down the boardwalk. So, yeah, most invisible friends don’t swim with you. You can’t stroke their wet hair or see the smile in their eyes. Most don’t smell like brine and the breeze. But he’d vanished, same as all invisible friends do, once I’d reached a certain age.
It’s available now at Decadent Publishing and other e-book sellers!
Katherine McIntyre is the author of a variety of poems, short stories, novellas and novels—truly, anything as long as it involves her primary passion: writing. Her steampunk adventure novel, An Airship Named Desire, was published in 2012 by Hazardous Press. Since then, she has two up and coming novellas, By the Sea, and, Poisoned Apple, picked up by Decadent Publishing. The next novel on the horizon is her young adult science fiction, Snatched, which will be published with Jupiter Gardens Press within the year. For more casual writing, she’s a regular contributor on CaffeineCrew.com, a geek news website. With more imagination than she knows what to do with, writing proved to be the best outlet.
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