Book Review


Rating: 5 / 5

REMARKABLY BRIGHT CREATURES by Shelby Van Pelt begins with Marcellus, a giant Pacific octopus kept in captivity in an aquarium. He speaks to the reader, counting his days of captivity and his observations of the humans he observes around him and his wanderings of the aquarium.

The story follows Tova Sullivan, a widow who works the night shift at the aquarium, tasked with cleaning up. She frequently talks to the different animals on display, but her heart has a special place for Marcellus. Tova is lonely, having lost her son years ago and her husband just recently. Marcellus has ideas on the mystery at the center of Tova’s life, he just needs to find a way to communicate this to Tova.

I have been eager to get to this book, so was happy when it worked out for a Bookoplathon roll to pick a highest rated book and a book with first person perspective. Though Marcellus’ passages are short and aren’t the bulk of the story, they are in first person so it worked!

If I hadn’t been told again and again how wonderful this book is, I really wouldn’t have expected a talking octopus book to be a big win for me, but this really lived up to the hype! The story is written with such heart and you can really feel the pain and grief and longing of the different characters. Marcellus’ personality, a grump but a loving one, really brought the story home.

I’m pretty sure I’m the last person to finally pick this one up (or at least that is what my feed has looked like), but I do really recommend this one a lot if you’ve missed out on it!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s