Title of book: The Voyage of the Narwhal by Andrea Barrett
Reason for reading: This was on the shelf at my grandparents’ house. I picked it out of the line-up because it had a really beautiful spine— Dark blue with shiny gold filagree on the top and bottom.
First impressions: Like I said, I really like the spine. The front of the cover is beautiful in a kind of vintage-looking way: “Voyage” and “Narwhal” are larger than the other words, set before a watercolor picture of a huge iceberg or snowy mountain. I also like how, even though the author’s accolades are on the front, they don’t overpower the title. I never enjoyed when books touted the author and his/her awards more than the title of the book (although I do know that this is a marketing ploy).
Previous reads by this author: None.
Hardcover, paperback, or ebook: Paperback.
GoodReads rating: 3.89 average
First sentences: He was standing on the wharf, peering down at the Delaware River while the sun beat on his shoulders. A mild breeze, the smells of tar and copper. A few yards away the Narwhal loomed, but he was looking instead at the partial reflection trapped between hull and pilings. The way the planks wavered, the railing bent, the boom appeared then disappeared; the way the image filled the surface without concealing the complicated life below. He saw, beneath the transparent shadow, what his father had taught him to see: the schools of minnows, the eels and algae, the mussels burrowing into the silt; the diatoms and desmids and insect larvae sweeping past hydrozoans and infant snails.