One night, Jen goes out on deck and encounters five other students. She knows Charlie from one of her classes, and he’s a funny, friendly, regular guy. Picture-perfect Dani and his gorgeous wife, Mariana, live right down the hall from Jen, and she has seen TS, who’s built like a truck, around the ship, and recognizes the cute but quiet Thomas as well.
Then Jen sees something that isn’t humanly possible. Jen would have thought that it was all a dream if not for the fact that Charlie, Dani, Mariana, TS, and Thomas are making every effort to cover it up. Suddenly, the five of them are everything but normal, and Jen is determined to figure out what they’re hiding.
When she does, her life really does change. Jen expected to spend her summer studying the cultures of Latin America; she never dreamed she’d learn about a magical culture instead.
But Jen’s childhood fantasy come true is about to turn into a nightmare; there’s something on the ship. Something dangerous. Suddenly, everyone on board is threatened by a creature that Jen never even believed existed. Jen and her new friends might be the only people who can stop it!
Now Jen has to learn everything she can about her new world before it kills her. And her friends. And maybe everyone on the entire ship.
~~~ Lynn's Review ~~~
Performancce - 5 STARS
Story - 5 STARS
I first read Semester Aboard in 2014, and I fell in love with the characters. Elizabeth Kirke creates a magical, modern world that I lost myself in. Her characters are well defined and very complex. Kirke paints a spectacular picture in each port stop. It was so easy to lose myself within the pages.
I’ve read Semester Aboard a few times since then and I immerse myself in it each time. Listening to Starla Huchton bring it to life for me again was well, magical. Huchton infuses her passion and intensity into this story. When Jen and her new friends are confronted by a creature on the boat and a fight ensues, I was right there on the ship deck with them feeling every punch, snarl, and bite. It was fantastic!
As debut novels go, Semester Aboard is a flawless adventure into a mysterious, magical world. I highly recommend the series and the audiobook.