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When We Believed in Mermaids: A Novel

An Amazon Charts and Washington Post bestseller.

From the author of The Art of Inheriting Secrets comes an emotional new tale of two sisters, an ocean of lies, and a search for the truth.

Her sister has been dead for fifteen years when she sees her on the TV news…

Josie Bianci was killed years ago on a train during a terrorist attack. Gone forever. It’s what her sister, Kit, an ER doctor in Santa Cruz, has always believed. Yet all it takes is a few heart-wrenching seconds to upend Kit’s world. Live coverage of a club fire in Auckland has captured the image of a woman stumbling through the smoke and debris. Her resemblance to Josie is unbelievable. And unmistakable. With it comes a flood of emotions—grief, loss, and anger—that Kit finally has a chance to put to rest: by finding the sister who’s been living a lie.

After arriving in New Zealand, Kit begins her journey with the memories of the past: of days spent on the beach with Josie. Of a lost teenage boy who’d become part of their family. And of a trauma that has haunted Kit and Josie their entire lives.

Now, if two sisters are to reunite, it can only be by unearthing long-buried secrets and facing a devastating truth that has kept them apart far too long. To regain their relationship, they may have to lose everything.

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Anonymous says:

Engrossing and poignant When We Believed in Mermaids is an engrossing, turbulent, and poignant book about two sisters, Kit and Josie. When the story begins, Kit is shocked to see her sister in the background of a news broadcast from New Zealand, thousands of miles away from their home in California–especially since Josie had been killed 15 years earlier. When she goes to New Zealand to find her sister, Kit unknowingly sets off a chain of events that will impact her own life, as well as that of her sister and the life…

Anonymous says:

Dive In This is my first book by Barbara O Neal. I instantly connected to her writing style, her storytelling, her characters. It doesn’t hurt that I’m a fan of mermaids. I’m at a loss for words to convey how much I loved this book, how sad I was to finish it. When you feel as though you’re losing friends, well that says something. The story weaves between settings, the past and present…there are many opportunities to feel lost. I wasn’t. This is poignant, horrifying, happy, yet confusingly always…

Anonymous says:

An Emotional Journey Californian Dr. Kit Bianci believes her sister Josie Bianci is dead, killed in a terrorist attack. Josie survived the attack but reinvented herself as Mari Edwards in New Zealand. Kit and her mother see Mari on television and their hope of Josie’s survival is revived.Kit travels to Auckland to see if she can find her sister. There, she meets musician Javier Velez. He assists her in her search and Kit recalls her troubled childhood. Soon, they become romantically involved. Mari also…

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