Misskaella was marked a witch from a young age, and she drifts aimless and unhappy through life as the men and women of Rollrock Island do their best to avoid her. Her fortunes change when one lonely lad realizes what magical deeds she is capable of doing—for a price. After being paid handsomely for the service, Missk is able to pull a gorgeous woman forth from a seal, forever changing Rollrock and its people.
Over time, there is nary a man on the island who hasn’t bought his own achingly beautiful sea wife off of Misskaella, leaving their seal coats locked away to keep them forever in human form. The sea wives bring forth son after son—never any daughters—and the cycle begins anew as the lads thrive and grow and come to want their own wives.
Despite her powers and wealth, secretive Misskaella is still hidden away on the outskirts of island society, and the mams of Rollrock are desperate with longing for their old lives in the sea. It will take generations before a force of change can break the cycle and save the brides of Rollrock Island…who will the minister of change be?
The Brides of Rollrock Island is a mesmerizing fantasy that draws from the selkie legends of Celtic lore. In a narrative that spans decades, each chapter is told from the point of view of a different island dweller, including Misskaella herself. The prose is beautifully written, the story is captivating and unique, and mature readers are likely to fall deeply under its spell.
Highly recommended, particularly for those who love mythology and folk tales. 320 pages. 978-0375869198
Recommended by: Molly Crumbley, Librarian, Maryland, USA.