A teen boy tries to balance caring for his family, making a life for himself, and saving the world in Moskowitz’s (Gena/Finn, 2016, etc.) thoughtful seafaring adventure.
Indi knows his family is odd. Four white siblings living alone on a rickety boat after their parents’ disappearances would be strange enough, but they are also “sicarios”—monster hunters like their parents before them. The quartet sails the Mediterranean, speaking an amalgam of Romance languages mixed with Greek and Arabic, risking their lives to kill nightmarish creatures that live in the water and prey on humans, and surviving as best they can. As his eldest sister leads them on an impossible revenge mission to find the legendary monster they believe killed their parents, Indi longs for a life of less danger for his siblings and more normalcy for himself. But after forming an unexpected connection with a vulpine Tunisian female pirate, Indi begins to question in earnest if he actually belongs in this world. Existential pensiveness and heart-stopping action (on monster-infested high seas no less) are a rare, successfully developed duo. Indi’s life is dangerous sea creatures one moment, anxious contemplation the next, and the constancy of his siblings through it all. Moskowitz immerses readers in Indi’s perspective, where electrocuting monsters is second nature and stepping onto dry land seems alien, exploring the complicated spaces between family, self, and duty.
Measured, mesmerizing, masterful. (Magical realism. 14-17)