Immerse Yourself in the Magnificence of the Ocean With These Aquatic Fantasy Reads

Lovers of oceanic fantasy will be in heaven with these three curated must-reads surrounding the beauty and might of the ocean.

Recommendations Three To Read
three fantasy book covers on the summer 3 to read background

Whether it thrills or terrifies you, there is no denying the power and immense beauty of the ocean. From the vibrance of coral reefs to the glimmer of deep sea bioluminescence, its no mystery why so many authors draw inspiration from the salty waves. Dive into this week’s recommendations of fantasy novels that highlight the enchanting beauty of the ocean. 

Hot Pick

The Adventures of Amina al-Sirafi by Shannon Chakraborty

The Adventures of Amina Al-sirafi by Shannon Chakraborty book cover. Depicting octopus tentacles reaching out from a dark blue sea to wrap around a pirate ship.


Amina al-Sirafi has accomplished anything and everything a successful pirate could dream of. She’s conquered terrible enemies, survived devastating betrayals, enjoyed multiple husbands, and even fought off a demon. Yes, a real demon. She’s prepared to retire and live a peaceful life with her family, but when one last enticing opportunity in the form of the mother of a former crew member comes knocking on her door with a prize of enough riches to make kings envious, she just can’t pass it up. But as she hunts for the missing girl, Amina realizes there are plots brewing with implications far beyond the straightforward kidnapping she signed up to resolve. Can she conquer the danger, save the girl, win her prize, and live to claim the victory of it all? 


The Adventures of Amina al-Sirafi is a captivating fantasy adventure story rich with magic and mystery. Cunning and courageous, Amina must sail dangerous seas, confront old enemies, and unravel secrets that threaten not just the life she has carved out for herself but also the safety she loves most. This immersive adventure is laden with decadent storytelling and vivid imagery inspired by Middle Eastern history and folklore, sure to keep your page turning. 

Beach Read 

Whispers of the Deep by Emma Hamm

Whispers of the Deep by Emma Hamm book cover. Depicting a merman-like creature with long flowing black hair and a muscular figure holding and gazing down into the eyes of a woman with long flowing red hair.


Mira is a brilliant engineer and part of the team responsible for keeping the underwater city she calls home, Beta, running smoothly. She doesn’t have dreams of glory or riches; she just wants to make her family proud and prove her worth. When a solo mission to an abandoned corner of the city leads to a terrifying encounter with a monster of legend, Mira’s life and the safety of her home are threatened. Arges is a leader and warrior of his people with command over a deadly legion of sea creatures of legend. He is determined to destroy Beta and protect his people’s peaceful way of life. When he captures Mira for information, he has no idea what he’s getting himself into. As their relationship progresses reluctantly beyond that of captor and captive and Mira’s fiery presence lingers in his dreams, he must make a decision: trust her or stick with what he’s always known. Their decisions will determine the fate of both of their people.


Whispers of the Deep is a gripping enemies-to-lovers story rich with all the juicy tension that comes with the trope and set in the enchanting world of the deep sea. As Mira and Arges are thrown onto a path they have nearly no control over and their hearts war with their minds, they begin to question everything they thought they knew and wonder what else they could be wrong about. Readers will be invited to explore themes of identity, cultural conflict, and the effects of changing environments on our ability to survive. 

Dark Horse

Curious Tides by Pascale Lacelle 

Curious Tides by Pascale Lacelle book cover. A line art drawing of the phases of the moon covering the sun and a hand reaching out from the waves below.


Emory’s magic as a healer is average at best until a devastating event leaves her surrounded by dead classmates, with her as the only survivor. Grappling with a new and dangerous power that no healer should be able to wield and terrified of the wrong people finding out and destroying everything she’s known, she enlists the help of a dark magic wielder familiar with her gifts – if you can call them that. Everything she thinks she’s learning is flipped upside down when all of her dead classmates come back from their watery graves alive, only to die in horrific magical ways, one by one. With her new magic and the mysterious tragedies of her classmates drawing the attention of magical high society, she’s thrust into their world and their investigation and finds she may not be able to escape the fate that’s always been waiting for her. 


Curious Tides is a riveting tale of mystery set in a dark academic high society that brings readers on a journey to unravel secrets alongside Emory as she tries her hardest to grapple with forces much larger and more powerful than she is. As she works to find allies, understand her magic, and solve the tragic puzzle, she also goes on a journey of self-discovery and acceptance. This vivid, enchanting story is impossible to resist as Emory deals with the pull of fate and the relationship between nature and magic. 

Hopefully, one of these enthralling reads has piqued your interest and made it onto your TBR. Tune in next week for more themed recommendations!

Check out last week’s Three to Read article on science fiction and fantasy sapphic romances here!

Click here to find these recs and more on Bookstr’s Three To Read bookshelf!