TITLE: Sea Witch Rising

AUTHOR: Sarah Henning

Rating: ★★★☆☆ (3.5)

PAGES: 416

PUBLISHER: Katherine Tegen Books


GENRE(S): Fantasy, Retelling

The publisher kindly sent me a digital copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.

Sea Witch Rising by Sarah Henning - The Contented Reader“The Little Mermaid” takes a twisted turn in this thrilling sequel to villainess origin story Sea Witch, as the forces of land and sea clash in an epic battle for freedom, redemption, and true love. 

Runa will not let her twin sister die. Alia traded her voice to the Sea Witch for a shot at happiness with a prince who doesn’t love her. And his rejection will literally kill her—unless Runa intervenes.

Under the sea, Evie craves her own freedom—but liberation from her role as Sea Witch will require an exchange she may not be willing to make. With their hearts’ desires at odds, what will Runa and Evie be willing to sacrifice to save their worlds?

Told from alternating perspectives, this epic fairy tale retelling is a romantic and heart-wrenching story about the complications of sisterhood, the uncompromising nature of magic, and the cost of redemption.


This is definitely an enjoyable sequel to an epic fantasy retelling of the little mermaid! The first book, Sea Witch, was not my favourite and it did fall a little flat for me. But, I enjoyed it and thankfully, I enjoyed the sequel as well!

Sea Witch Rising picks up right after the events of Sea Witch. Evie is struggling with the events of the first book. But we also follow two new characters, Alia and Runa who are twins. Alia falls in love with a human and trades her voice with the Sea Witch to prove her love is reciprocated. Runa also makes a trade with the Sea Witch at a much steeper cost.

I really enjoyed the characters in this sequel. Alia and Runa are really great, dynamic characters who hold a lot of love. I feel like love is definitely a central theme to this book: love for your sister but also love for others. It was a lot of fun to revisit Evie as well.

I think one of the things I enjoyed about this book is the fact that it followed a different and new storyline. I love that it is set in the same world and follows the events of the first book. But it is nice to get a totally new story through new characters.

One of my comments about the first book is that the story was slow. I feel like I experienced this a little bit this time around, but overall, it was a more enjoyable reading experience for me!

I think this is a great duology for those that love retellings and those that have a specific love for The Little Mermaid! Sea Witch Rising is my favourite out of the two and I really enjoyed it! I’m definitely curious to read more from Sarah Henning in the future!

Because I still believe in happy endings, even when I’m a nightmare.

Favourite Quote

About The Author

Sarah Henning Author Photo - The Contented ReaderSarah Henning is a recovering journalist who has worked for the Palm Beach Post, Kansas City Star and Associated Press, among others. While in South Florida, Sarah lived and worked through five hurricanes, which gave her an extreme respect for the ocean. When not writing, she runs ultramarathons, hits the playground with her two kids and hangs out with her husband Justin, who doubles as her long-suffering IT department. Sarah lives in Lawrence, Kansas, which, despite being extremely far from the beach, happens to be pretty cool.

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Let’s Chat in the Comments!

Did you like Sea Witch? Are you excited to read Sea Witch Rising? What are your thoughts on the cover?

Sea Witch Rising by Sarah Henning - The Contented Reader

Victoria @ The Contented Reader

Victoria @ The Contented Reader

Avid reader and tea drinker. I read and review young adult books on my blog, The Contented Reader!

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